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Stepford Wives MM [Mass Market Paperback]

Ira Levin
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

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Book Description

30 Jun 2004
Ira Levin's novel about the hidden evil in a small American town.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: HarperTorch; Reprint edition (30 Jun 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060738197
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060738198
  • Product Dimensions: 16.8 x 10.4 x 1.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,029,732 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
The Welcome Wagon lady, sixty if she was a day but working at youth and vivacity (ginger hair, red lips, a sunshine-yellow dress), twinkled her eyes and teeth at Joanna and said, "You're really going to like it here! Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BARBIE RULES! 31 Dec 2002
This is a thought provoking, tautly written novella. A gem of suspense, it was first published in the early nineteen seventies and went on to become a popular movie of the same name, starring Katherine Ross.
The story is very simple but gripping and well written. Joanna Eberhart moves to the seemingly bucolic town of Stepford with her husband, Walter, and two children, leaving behind the dangers of big city living. An independent, assertive, intelligent, and creative woman, Joanna epitomizes the newly liberated women of the nineteen seventies. Looking for like souls with whom to become friends, she seeks out some of the other married women of the town, only to find that they are all uniformly addicted to housework, give their husbands complete obeisance, are made up to the gills, and have figures courtesy of maidenform.
Joanna manages to find several like minded women such as herself. Yet, when they, too, become addicted to housework after having a romantic weekend alone with their respective husbands, Joanna becomes convinced that the town's Men's Association has hatched a sinister plot to change all the wives of Stepford into submissive Barbie dolls. Will Joanna manage to escape the fate of the rest of the Stepford wives? Read the book and find out. You will not be disappointed.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "We're in the Town that Time Forgot" 22 Jun 2005
Format:Mass Market Paperback
About fifteen years ago, when I was in my mid-teens, I read this novel for the first time and enjoyed the experience. That is why after watching the movie with Nicole Kidman and being thoroughly disappointed, I decided to reread the book and see if I maintained my opinion about Levin's work. The result was that I found the novel to be even better than I remembered it to be, and was amazed by the author's ability to transmit so much in such a short work. He certainly does not beat around the bush!
The story begins with Joanna, Walter and their two kids adjusting to their new life in Stepford, which proves not to be an easy task, especially for Joanna. Starting with her neighbor, she starts seeing a disturbing pattern of behavior in the wives of Stepford. For example, Carol cannot come over for coffee because she needs to wax the floors...at night! Meanwhile, Carol's husband is out, having fun in the Men's Association. This is the other big thorn in Joanna's side, since she finds out that there are no associations of women in the community, and being a participant in the pro Women's Liberation movement, this is particularly bothersome.
But Joanna's search for "normal" women yields some results, and she meets Bobbie Markowe, another newcomer in Stepford who is as desperate as Joanna for finding somebody to talk to. They start to shake things up right away, but without getting very far due to the disinterest of the rest of the women. That is were the suspicions that something is not right start to build up in the two friends, and the novel gains speed and becomes the ride of a life time.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superbly creepy 27 Oct 2007
A very short but tightly crafted novel. I found this suspenseful and shocking even though I knew the plot and finale from the classic film version (not the absurd 2004 remake). Of course, there are plot holes and surely at least one husband would have objected to the plan, and/or at least one wife would have managed to escape and tell all to, if not the disbelieving authorities then at least the sensation-hungry newspapers. But this does not really matter: the story is a superb creepy suspense story.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Slow, but worth reading to the end 17 Jun 2010
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I first encountered the Stepford Wives through the 2004 remake of the 1975 film- I thought the basic premise was interesting, but had a few problems with the remake- both in terms of narrative and plot, and in that it seems to materially weaken the politics of the book. I promptly forgot about it after leaving the cinema, and only read this book a week or two ago as part of my university studies.
The plot must be widely known by now, so I'll summarise: Modern woman Joanna Eberhart moves to the idyllic pastoral town of Stepford with her husband and two children, quickly becoming frustrated with the lack of energy and independence of her neighbouring housewives. Finally she makes a couple of like-minded friends, only to have one and then the other undergo sudden personality changes, rendering them as insipid and dependant as all the other women in town. Joanna is frightened and suspicious, but her husband, Walter, insists it's all in her head. The book climaxes in a shocking revelation as to the nature of the town's exclusive "Men's association."
I won't be coy; this book is a slow-burner. It actually makes sense for it to be this way, but only if you read right to the end and take in the full structure of the book, which is based on a set time-frame. But for the first two-thirds it's slow going and I actually almost gave up on it. In addition, the writing is very sparse and poised in a characteristically American style, and the lack of texture might frustrate some UK and European readers. It's only in the final few pages that the book really takes off, evolving into a chilling, atmospheric telling of Joanna's desperate attempts to escape from the community that has become her prison.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant
Great book and great price. If you read the book you NEED to see the original movie. So so amazing!
Published 11 months ago by MellyMo
4.0 out of 5 stars Stepford reviewers
This was a greatly enjoyable little novel. I have seen the original film a few times but I still greatly enjoyed this. Read more
Published on 14 Nov 2011 by The Emperor
2.0 out of 5 stars Not what i expected
"All the beautiful people live in the idyllic village of stepford Conneticut, an affluent suburban Eden populated with successful hubbys and their beautiful, dutiful wives. Read more
Published on 9 May 2009 by L. Todd
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing
The term, "Stepford Wife" is so well-known today, it's hard to believe it all started with this little novella. Read more
Published on 30 Nov 2008 by Kona
5.0 out of 5 stars Compelling Must Read!
"The Stepford Wives," is a well-told and colorful story that had me excitedly flipping the pages as fast as humanly possible, yes, this book is that good! Read more
Published on 8 July 2004 by Victoria Taylor Murray
5.0 out of 5 stars THE WIFE ALL MEN SECRETLY DESIRE...
This is a thought provoking, tautly written novella. A gem of suspense, it was first published in the early nineteen seventies and went on to become a popular movie of the same... Read more
Published on 1 July 2004 by Lawyeraau
5.0 out of 5 stars What would you do if you met the perfect woman?
What if life was perfect?
Does it mean we'd be insane? Or happy? This book leads one into the world of television-commercial perfection, the ultimate celebration and... Read more
Published on 18 Jun 2004 by Theodore A. Rushton
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