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My Search for Warren Harding

Plunket, Robert

103 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0394529812 / ISBN 13: 9780394529813
Published by Alfred a Knopf, 1983
Condition: Fine Hardcover
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Southron Books, LLC
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About this Item

0394529812 Author's first novel. This hardcover book is square and tight. The boards and spine have no wear with pristine gilt. The pages and endpages are clean, with no markings or folds. The dustjacket is As New. Original Price is intact. Not ex-lib. No remainder mark. Advance copy promotional material and photo of author laid in. Bookseller Inventory # 002964

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Bibliographic Details

Title: My Search for Warren Harding

Publisher: Alfred a Knopf

Publication Date: 1983

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition: Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: As New

Edition: First Edition.

About this title


Elliot Wiener, the smug narrator of this sporadically amusing, faintly unpleasant first novel, is a young historian specializing in Pres. Warren Harding, desperate for an academic scoop; and he believes he has found it when he learns that Harding's supposed mistress, Rebekah Kinney, is living in Los Angeles--in a ""Classic Hollywood Spanish"" manse. So Elliot talks his way into the house, meets the old lady herself (a crone in a wheelchair), meets Rebekah's fat granddaughter Jonica. . . and is soon agreeing to rent the estate's pool house for $800 a month. Thus ensconced, hungry for dirt, Elliot tries eavesdropping, with farcical results. He has an unedifying chat with the resident gardener, crude Osvaldo. He decides to make friends with Jonica--inviting her to a disastrous dinner party. (One of the guests, referred to only as ""the faggot,"" calls Jonica ""Miss Goodyear."") But then Elliot and Jonica do become chums: they go to a play (""Just eight ugly girls whining about rejection"")--and soon wind up, to Elliot's semi-disgust, in bed, after which much of the space here is given over to insult material about gross Jonica. (""My God, I could do about seven hours on her eating habits alone. . . . Sex with Jonica was a trial. . . I'd pretend to be delighted and try to keep from blowing lunch. . . ."") By cultivating the foul Jonica, however, Elliot does learn that there's a trunkful of Harding letters in the main house; so the novel's second half involves some slapsticky efforts to gain possession of the trunk--efforts which end up in predictable irony when Jonica gets the wrong idea about Elliot's relationship with her cowboyish ex-husband Vernon.

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