This book has been in my to read box for a very long time, and what a pleasure to dive into a character driven novel where I can indulge in thoughts and motivations instead of a runaway plot Martha Garver s ex husband dies in a plane crash and she is horrified to learn that the executor of his estate, and the person who will be handling her son s trust fund is none other than Charlie Leveque, the conservative and insufferable attorney who represented her ex husband Raymond in their bitter divorce However, after meeting regarding the business of the will, Martha and Charlie both discover that they have in common than they ever could have imagined Martha s husband may be dead, but Charlie has his own insufferable ex wife to deal with both have teenage children with all their myriad problems and both find themselves, remarkably enjoying the same things Sooner rather than later, Martha and Charlie find themselves attracted to each other However, as in all novels of manners, the course of love cannot run too smoothly How they work out the rocky bumps in their relationship and come to a satisfactory conclusion makes for a most enjoyable read. After Her Ex Husband Dies In A Plane Crash, Martha Gaver Is Horrified To Learn That The Executor Of Raymond S Estate Is Charlie, The Conservative, Insufferable Lawyer Who Represented Raymond In Their Bitter Divorce Yet Soon After They Reenter Each Other S Lives, Martha, Charlie, And Their Teenage Children Find They Have In Common Than They Imagined As They Struggle To Rebuild Their Livesand That Opposites Really Do AttractEngaging,, Witty, And Entertaining, Domestic Pleasures Is A Touching, Piercing Tale Of Love Lost, Found, And Embraced Once Again While the story was predictable, this was a wonderful book to read I enjoyed every page One of Beth Gutcheon s better books. I don t know if I ve read her books before probably but I enjoyed this bookthoroughly She seems to excel at describing the foibles we all exhibit in relationships. One of my all time favorite books And it s not really about domesticity, or housekeeping. 3.5 stars Incredibly well written characters They were so real It was a total soap opera, no real redeeming message, but I kept turning those pages. Like Martha, I could barely tolerate the notion of her ex husbands divorce lawyer who well and truly f ed up her life, hitting on her Like Martha, he won me over This was an interesting book to read in that I could potentially call this serious chic lit The prose was by no means heavy handed, but light, yet with substance If I were to become a writer, this light with substance I think is what I would strive for This is the very first time in a book with multiple character lives that I actually became invested in The drama with Sophie s sister, Sophie herself, all had me captivated I didn t really care about the teenagers, but I did enjoy the merging of lives, of families This is a story about people constructing families I really felt bad for Phoebe, and personally I hope she rebels some She s earned it All their teenage drama was fairly boring, but I enjoyed the contrasts of neighbourhood schools Their upperclass lives in New York was pretty alienating as a reader It definitely did not draw me in At one point Charlie is helping Martha s son try on some of his fathers clothes, and sees his tag and things The Gap Doesn t this kid own any real clothes I m sorry, but isn t The Gap like the definition of elitism Maybe it was like the WalMart equivalent in 1991, but now it s definitely the rich kids store Then again, I exist outside the wealthy NYC bubble I spent much of the time throughout this book wondering about their respective rents What was really awesome about this book was that Gutcheon included cheesy moments but made them believable She saw a love story, and instead of writing about it observantly like Alice Munroe or grossly mushy like Danielle Steele, she s like, how can I write a cute scene without wanting to throw up The whole snowstorm scene at the ski chalet, forced to share a bed trope, well, Gutcheon made it actually believable Charlie s bursts of romantic intentions were both adorable and convincing.Would I reread Possibly I think when I m an older woman with a family maybe , I would find interest in aspects to this book than simply the romance For now it s going into my donate pile, but with good wishes. 3.5 good family dysfunction story Quaint and dated at this point but I do like the way that Gutcheon writes her characters. Persephone Books turned me on to Gutcheon with its re issue of Still Missing, so when Jen recommended this title, I kept an eye out for a copy at Powell s Gutcheon has a real talent for focusing on the domestic while also evoking a strong sense of time and place This time and place is New York City in the mid to late 1980s, which means OF COURSE that our heroine has to have a SoHo loft I m not complaining about Martha s loft, which is a realistic match for her character I m just envious of all those great 1980s real estate deals Although some of the plot elements were a little too coincidental and even a little far fetched the Washington Square Park scene, for instance , the characters fully inhabited my space and the book was quietly unputdownable.
Beth Gutcheon grew up in western Pennsylvania She was educated at Harvard where she took an honors BA in English literature She has spent most of her adult life in New York City, except for sojourns in San Francisco and on the coast of Maine In 1978, she wrote the narration for a feature length documentary on the Kirov ballet school, The Children of Theatre Street, which was nominated for an Ac
- 368 pages
- Domestic Pleasures: A Novel
- Beth Gutcheon
- 23 May 2019 Beth Gutcheon