Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Elements of Style by Wendy Wasserstein



Genre: Chick Lit

Elements of Style, the Pulitzer Prize—winning playwright Wendy Wasserstein’s first novel, is a scathing comedy about New York's high society facing the post—9/11 world.

Francesca Weissman, an Upper East Side pediatrician rated number one by Manhattan magazine, floats on the fringes of the upper strata of privilege and aspiration. Through her bemused eyes we meet the thoroughbred socialite Samantha Acton; relentless social climber Judy Tremont; Barry Santorini, an Oscar-winning moviemaker accustomed to having his way; his supermarket heiress wife, Clarice; and more, tossed together in a frothy stew of outrageous conspicuous consumption and adulterous affairs that play out on Page Six. But when Wasserstein’s madcap tour of the social lives and mores of twenty-first-century Manhattan veers into tragedy, we finally see the true cost of her characters’ choices, and the beating heart of this dazzling novel.

My thoughts:

I listened to the audio version of this book. There was a bit of everything in this book from humor to sadness. The events of 9/11 cast a pall over the book for me. While some incidents were humorous, others weren’t and they weren’t meant to be. Some things rang quite true about life in New York right after the attacks. Although some characters were not very sympathetic, I loved Francesca and wanted to see things work out for her. It was interesting to read the repercussions these characters all went through because of their own decisions.

For reading challenge: Audio book challenge

2 comments:

  1. This does sound like it would be an interesting book. I imagine it is hard to find a good balance of humor in a book that touches on such a difficult time period. Great review, Yvonne.

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