Like the fiction of Jeffrey Eugenides and Jhumpa Lahiri, it is the work of a master stylist with a profound understanding of the complexities of the heart and mind. After graduating from UCLA, she traveled in France, where she began a novel and, in , married Howard Baker, a critic, professor, and editor. She received a Guggenheim Fellowship in and, the next year, published Trio , a novel whose frank portrayal of a lesbian relationship proved too scandalous for the times. Baker and her husband adapted Trio as a play in , but it was quickly shut down because of protests.
Baker died in of cancer. Deborah Eisenberg is the author of four collections of short stories and a play. Henry Awards. She lives in New York City. Nicole — Bland, and also diving into being conventional.
Cassandra at the Wedding
Having seen the end game of the alternative. The dead mother. Nicole — And her husband says Cass and Jude are totally based on her and her daughters. Nicole — I love those glimpses of her whole life. Nicole — the idea that cass has this whole group of lovers and ex-lovers and friends and weirdos back in the city.
The quality of the writing is so extraordinary.
Cassandra at the Wedding by Dorothy Baker
I could not believe I had literally never heard of an author who writes so plainly and well. Emily — That whole opening sequence of the car ride through the California desert is virtuosic.
Nicole — Stopping for the drink, the sunburn, the open car. Dousing her head at the pump.
It could probably be even shorter! But, then, I guess McEwan does this stuff, with Saturday, etc. Emily — I hope the tide will turn against the big books, even though I enjoy a lot of them, too I would like to see a resurgence of these perfect jeweled Cassandra-style eggs. Nicole — I like and am grateful for the third of the book narrated by Judith.
And I am still unsure of whether or not the final third is too upbeat, or correct. Nicole — I obviously wanted Cassandra to live. But, then, what to do? Nicole — I love it.
Cassandra at the Wedding – New York Review Books
Judith is actually her border collie. Emily — endings, man. I sympathize. Just land the plane somehow, aim for as few fatalities as possible.
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Nicole — On it. But, no, endings are difficult. And this did have resolution! SO, since cass DOES get it together, is it because she thinks that Judith is in some way broken by marrying this clown? Emily — I just feel like that gives the book a little bit too much making-sense credit. Nicole — Her horror when she sees that Judith is in a low bikini, did you catch that? I thought Judith was pregnant at first, when I read that part. Emily — Cassandra!
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What a weirdo! With her brandy.
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And her eggs frothed into more brandy. A heroine who is chic and interesting and slightly nuts and not at all about to be rescued by a man—sort of like the Elaine Dundy narrators except they all get rescued by men. Nicole — She will be rescued by her own awesomeness, and rescued only in the sense she will just kick a shoe off the Golden Gate Bridge.
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