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The Hazards of Good Breeding: A Novel Hardcover – 5 Mar 2003

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Co.; 1 edition (5 Mar. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393051323
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393051322
  • Product Dimensions: 21.1 x 14.7 x 2.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 7,057,125 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"Will naturally be compared to Cheever's stories and Salinger's Catcher in the Rye. What's more surprising is that it deserves a place beside those masterpieces." "In her poised and astute first novel...Shattuck unleashes a skewering gift for social commentary." "A generously portrayed and richly appointed debut." "Shattuck's romantic comedy will remind readers of the wit and energy of Cheever's Wapshot Chronicles." -- Maureen Howard "[A] thoughtful and elegant first novel, full of insight and humor." -- Roxana Robinson "[A]ll that the title promises and more. It is a terrific debut by a talented writer." -- Jill McCorkle "An excellent novel about feeling, complex people...every bit as affecting as Richard Yates' magnificent Revolutionary Road." -- Ann Beattie "[A] sterling novel; a deliciously comic and deeply profound look at an American family, indeed at America itself." -- Binnie Kirshenbaum "There are at least 15 certifiable pleasures in every paragraph of this charming, intelligent, and exceedingly well-crafted debut." -- Helen Shulman --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Jessica Shattuck is the author of The Hazards of Good Breeding (a New York Times Notable Book and a Winship/PEN Award finalist) and Perfect Life. Her writing has appeared in The New Yorker, The Believer, Wired, Mother Jones, and Glamour, among other publications. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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CAROLINE DUNLAP HAS ALWAYS been surrounded by crazy men. Read the first page
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By prisrob TOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 9 Aug. 2003
Format: Hardcover
Caroline Dunlap comes home from college to sort out her life and realizes life will be different now that her mother, Faith and father, Jack are divorced. And who is looking after Eilot, her brother- apparently Eliot is. He is dreaming up wild schemes and looking for Rosita-his nanny who has disappeared. Jack, Caroline's father is more than eccentric, he is forgetful and remembers his family as the mood strikes him. Faith the mom, is trying to find a new life and after some sort of breakdown recovers quickly and has a fling with a Frenchman she meets at a weekend gathering. Caroline moves through the book with no sense of purpose.This book is full of interesting characters but some of them like Rock, her high school ... smoking friend, and a film documenter she meets at Eliot's school are not fully developed and left to wither. Caroline moves through the book with no sense of purpose.This is a book full of individual stories that don't have time to latch on to each other. The writing is creative and full of descriptions that awaken the senses. And the author is from Vermont- what could be better!!!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 24 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
A fine first novel 31 July 2003
By Peggy Vincent - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Everyone in this novel seems to be going in circles in their upper class suburban Boston world. Caroline Dunlap, who has just graduated from a proper college, has come home to the world she left and finds it essentially unchanged with everyone coming quietly and oh-so-properly unglued. Everyone is looking for his or her own key to happiness, and it is as their paths cross and overlap that the pathos, humor, and sensitive writing are revealed.
A good summer read.
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Charming book, sure to delight 13 Feb. 2003
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I highly recommend this book. Unlike many keenly-observed, character-driven novels, this novel has a plot that hooks you in immediately. And unlike many witty writers, this one pokes fun at her characters but treats even the most unsympathetic ones with tenderness. There are countless observations that will make you laugh out loud as well as scenes that are truly touching, but never saccharine. It is very well-written.
This is one of those books that make a great gift--with it's multiple perspectives, it would be perfect for almost any reader.
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
A must-read debut novel 30 Jan. 2003
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Hardcover
If you are looking for a book that you won't want to put down, one that is beautifully written, clever, funny and smart, then this is it. I predict that it will be one of those books that you'll want all of your friends and family to read.
Written from multiple perspectives, the author has an uncanny ability to naturally convey the emotions and thoughts of an entire family. There are few books that you can read over and over--this is one of them and I know it will do incredibly well. I would buy stock in this book!
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Terrific 24 April 2003
By Elizabeth Hendry - Published on
Format: Hardcover
What are the hazards of good breeding? For Caroline Dunlap, a recent college graduate returning home for the summer, the summer, the hazards include divorced parents, a mother who has lost much of her grip on reality, a father who can't connect with his children, a younger brother who is a bit of a social misfit, an ex-boyfriend babbling on and on about living in Tibet, boring parties and even more boring people. Much of the action in the novel is seen through Caroline's eyes and luckily for the reader, Caroline sees through most of the garbage in the wealthy world she grew up in. The novel makes for entertaining reading and is very reminiscent of Cheever and O'Hara, but is told with more of an obviously discerning eye. Enjoy.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
TOP NOTCH 26 Jan. 2003
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Really, truly, and genuinely great. HAZARDS tells the story, in shifting perspective, of the rapidly unraveling Dunlaps, high-WASP New England family. Great and big cast of characters...amazing specificity...surprising momentum and build. And it's a first novel. Kind of frightening.
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