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Dumping Billy Hardcover – May 12, 2004

28 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Kate Jameson has outgrown her Brooklyn gang: Bina, Bunny, Barbie and Bev, aka the Bitches of Bushwick. While the Bs still go for French manicures and (gasp) matching furniture, Kate has embraced the urbane life. She has a Chelsea apartment and a neat job as school psychologist at Andrew Country Day "in the best neighborhood in Manhattan." But when Kate meets bad boy bar owner Billy Nolan in her natal borough, she instantly wants to get Brooklyn back into the girl. He's hot for her, too, but fate intervenes in the form of Kate's best friend, Elliot Winston. Elliot and his boyfriend, Brice, are determined to keep Kate from committing romantic folly yet again. In a plot twist that the late Goldsmith (The First Wives Club, etc.) might have called Queer Eye for the Straight Goy, Elliot notices that every time Billy dumps a girl, she marries the next guy she dates. So instead of following heart and loins to Billy's bed, Kate helps Elliot engineer a match between Billy and Bina, whose putative fiancé, Jack, went to Hong Kong without giving her the anticipated diamond. Minor complications abound, as Bina dates Billy but falls for someone else, and Kate's burning jealousy blinds her to the truth long after the reader sees it. Goldsmith's fans will perhaps forgive the almost farcical absence of reality; others may resent not only the illogic but also the stereotyping of gays, Jews, working-class Catholics and nearly everybody else. If Goldsmith had affection for her characters, she hid it well.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Katherine "Kate" Jameson is proud of how she made the break from her Brooklyn roots: she earned her Ph.D and now works in an exclusive Manhattan school. She has never introduced her old, tacky Brooklyn group to her new, sophisticated friends, especially Elliot, whose gay sensibilities would find the Brooklyn brood uncouth--or so she assumes. Her worlds collide, however, when her Brooklyn friend Bina gets dumped instead of engaged. Bina breaks down in front of Elliot and his classy partner, Brice, and to Kate's amazement, they prove very helpful. Bina, despite her provincial ways, has always been a wonderful friend, which is why Kate blanches at the plan Elliot and Brice hatch: Bina must date the gorgeous Billy Nolan, get dumped, and then marriage to her ex will surely follow. As the shenanigans unfold, Kate hopes Bina doesn't get hurt along the way and that her own feelings for Billy stay beneath the surface. This is Goldsmith's final novel, released only months after her untimely death this past January, and it contains all of the elements that have made her so famous and loved in the first place: wacky heroines exacting revenge on the male species. Fun, silly, and sure to please her fans. Mary Frances Wilkens
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Warner Books; 1st edition (May 12, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446531103
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446531108
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 2.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,026,607 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By rcarey22 on June 6, 2004
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have read and thoroughly enjoyed the following novels by Olivia
Goldsmith:
The First Wives Club
Flavor of the Month
The Bestseller
Fashionably Late
Marrying Mom
Switcheroo
Young Wives
Bad Boys (although a lot of you disliked it, I actually enjoyed it)
Pen Pals
and have concluded, in my opinion, based on Ms. Goldsmith's untimely death, Dumping Bill was not Olivia Goldsmith's finished product. The plot may have been Olivia's but this story does not fit the in depth characterizations of her previous works.
Although I would not recommend passing on "Dumping Billy", as I found it interesting that a lot of us still mistake good looks with stupidity, cockiness or something worse. There are times when you have to look under the surface of an individual or a situation to perhaps find something you might have otherwised missed, like a good person who assumes an undeserved title without actually knowing it exists. The lesson I learned here was "you can't judge a good book by its cover".
Just beware this novel does not compare to the wonderful novels Olivia Goldsmith has defined throughout the years and you will come away asking the same question I did "Who Really Wrote this Novel"?
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13 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Kindle Customer on July 16, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Dumping Billy is the last book by Olivia Goldsmith. I doubt it represents how she would have liked to be remembered.

Kate has a serious superiority complex-
Her old friends from Brooklyn just do not get her anymore, now that she is a "Doctor" (school psych.) in Manhattan.
Of one friend: "Bina definitely had an irony deficiency." To another: "You've had a haircut? Nope, just had my ears lowered." Those New Yorkers and their witty repartee! Who could expect the poor folks in Brooklyn to keep up with snappy patter like that?

Kate must be referred to as the protagonist, as she is certainly the central character, but a long way from a heroine. (Except, perhaps, her own.) She is elitist, smug, and insufferable:
"Her apartment was in Chelsea, but Kate could pass for a downtown hipster."
"she was grateful for all she herself had learned about style from Brice, college, Manhattan boutiques and her current New York friends."
"But now that she had a circle of intellectual, cosmopolitan pals, she could give up the frustration over Bina's provincial interests and conversation and simply love her good heart."

I don't know about you, but I HATE this woman!

I kept waiting for Kate to come to the realization that she was narrow minded and small- I thought the point of the book must be her transformation. Alas, no. Although she doesn't seem bright enough to have completed the SAT (let alone a doctorate) and she is a wretched specimen of a human being, she is rewarded. I expect this from life, but pop novels usually follow more logical standards of good and evil.

The sophomoric dialogue is peppered with witty retorts like "Uh, duh!
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Jane Potter on October 18, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I picked up this book to have a light, entertaining read. Unfortunately, there was no entertainment involved. Like many of the other reviewers, I hated Kate. I was not really attached to any of the characters, but I found Kate really detestable. I thought she was snobby. I appreciated that she had a semi-rough childhood and wanted something better for herself as an adult. Then when she finally got it, she really seemed to be arrogant and forget those who stood by her side while she was growing up. I also was not crazy about Billy. I thought he had no depth. I felt never felt like he was more than a pretty face, even after you found out his background and true feelings. I guess after writing all this, I mostly want to say, you should pass on this book!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Kara J. Jorges VINE VOICE on June 27, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Kate Jameson had a difficult childhood. Her mother died when she was young, leaving her in the care of an alcoholic father. Kate was taken in by the Horowitz family, including big-hearted, no-nonsense Mrs. Horowitz, a surrogate mother figure, and Bina, Kate's best friend. The Horowitzes and Kate's other friends, dubbed the Bitches of Bushwick, all live on the wrong side of the river for Kate, however, and embody everything about Brooklyn that she strove to leave behind. Kate made a new life for herself as a psychologist for an exclusive private school in Manhattan, developing a veneer of sophistication and a new group of polished, educated friends. From her urbane boyfriend to her new best friends, a gay couple, Kate has everything she ever wanted except marriage. She has even learned how to balance her two worlds without ever having them collide.

Then, one night, Bina shows up brokenhearted because the man she thought would propose told her he wanted space instead, and Kate's two lives begin to merge. Her gay friends, Elliott and Brice, begin showing up for baby showers and weddings in Brooklyn, and that's when they hatch their plan to bring Bina's boyfriend back to her. They want her to date Dumping Billy, a bartending, French-speaking Lothario whose ex-girlfriends always wind up marrying the very next man they date. Kate goes along reluctantly, denying the attraction she herself feels for Billy while she and her friends coldly manipulate him for their own ends. When the time comes for Billy to dump Bina, Kate makes her move and starts falling for him herself, plagued by worries that she's just like all the others. That ceases to matter when Billy learns he'd been manipulated, and he dumps Kate for her perfidy.
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