Retail pak Harper Audio 2003
CS ISBN 0060523468 $39.95 Seven cassettes
"I suppose because I went to film school, I think of my story as a sort of film." From there, Diane Johnson begins a cinematic narrative providing the appropriate distance to observe and comment on the gulf between American and French manners and morals. Johnson characterizes Americans as optimistic and naive while the French have a "gaiety fetish." Music, attitudes toward infidelity, and food all come under her relentless microscope. Twenty-something Californian Isabel Walker goes to Paris to help her pregnant stepsister, Roxy, whose husband, Charles-Henri, has left her for another woman. In time, Roxy becomes deeply depressed, Isabel falls for a sophisticated French septuagenarian, and Charles-Henri's mistress goes berserk. Bebe Neuwirth's stylish narration complements Johnson's witty prose. Her wry performance precisely captures Johnson's satiric sensibilities. S.J.H. (c) AudioFile 2003, Portland, Maine [Published: OCT/ NOV 03]
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