Starting from Happyby Patricia Marx
While waiting in line for apple pie at a party, Imogene Gilfeather, a lingerie designer who does not understand the reason for romance, meets Wally Yez, a scientist. Imogene is told that Wally is the perfect guy. (“Perfect,” she replies, “is not my type.”) Unfazed by Imogene’s indifference, Wally resolves to win her over. E-mails turn… See more details below
While waiting in line for apple pie at a party, Imogene Gilfeather, a lingerie designer who does not understand the reason for romance, meets Wally Yez, a scientist. Imogene is told that Wally is the perfect guy. (“Perfect,” she replies, “is not my type.”) Unfazed by Imogene’s indifference, Wally resolves to win her over. E-mails turn into late-night phone calls; one date turns into two and then more.
Wally is certain he and Imogene are meant for each other. (They both use mechanical pencils! Neither has had mumps!) But convincing his beloved is another matter. In defiance of the odds, or the gods, or perhaps just Imogene’s qualms, Wally and Imogene become a pair. Will Imogene indulge Wally’s longing for children? Can they possibly end as happily as they’ve begun?
Starting from Happy is a winning and sophisticated look at a rather zany couple as they come of age, and then just age—by one of the finest comic writers of our time.
Lorrie Moore, author of A Gate at the Stairs
“Stylish and sarcastic. Marx moves the story forward with infectious zeal and allows readers to revel in a quirky take on sex (and death) in the city.” Publishers Weekly
"Patty Marx is an authentic wit and her book is funny and often brilliant." –Woody Allen
“A funny boy-meets-girl novel in witty, quick bits that read like your best friend’s best tweets.”
“A book that’s moving and sweet. As the summer lopes toward its end, those looking for one last beach read could do a lot worse than to read this unexpectedly lovely book - in fact, one could hardly do better.” Boston Globe
“A poignant portrait of a long-term relationship, with all the disappointments and occasional triumphs that entails. A funny, sad and original take on the mating game.” Kirkus Reviews
“Comedic high art. Readers who enjoy the sly observations of Nora Ephron and the smart silliness of Woody Allen and Steve Martin should try Starting from Happy.” Booklist
Their story told through a series of brief "chaplettes," the mismatched lovers at the heart of this experimental comic novel have no business, and every reason, for being together. Described by a friend as a big "yes," quirky scientist Wally Yez knows exactly what he wants when he spies a statuesque redhead at a party in Manhattan. Imogene's reputation as an eligible designer of fine ladies undergarments precedes her, but a relationship with Wally is just about the last thing on her mind. A fiercely independent creature of habit, she is obsessed with her career and more-or-less happy with her married lover Ron de Jean, a well-known sleep researcher. She blows off a series of dates, but Wally does not give up easily, and the two begin an odd phone relationship that eventually leads to actual dates followed by cohabitation. Ambivalent on the best of days, Imogene is reluctant to marry, but slowly finds her will worn away by Wally's persistence and the two end up in the suburbs, raising two radically different kids. Or do they? That is because Marx (Him Her Him Again the End of Him, 2007, etc.) does not exactly follow a conventional structure and liberally inserts herself into the narrative. But peppered among the drawings and self-consciously wacky asides emerges a poignant portrait of a long-term relationship, with all the disappointments and occasional triumphs that entails. Ideally suited to the kind of audience that enjoys Woody Allen movies, this very clever effort is, like its lead characters, something of an acquired taste. But Imogene, especially, impresses as a creation of far more depth than her ice-queen exterior would suggest.
A funny, sad and original take on the mating game.
- Publication date:
- Edition description:
- Simon & Schuster
- Product dimensions:
- 5.56(w) x 8.70(h) x 0.95(d)
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