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I Am Thinking of My Darling Paperback – October 1, 1991


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 292 pages
  • Publisher: Yarrow Pr (October 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1878274058
  • ISBN-13: 978-1878274052
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 5.4 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,315,185 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

McHugh conjures up a beautiful epidemic for New York City in this reissue of his 1943 novel. A rare tropical virus has invaded the city, infecting its victims with a fever of happiness. They become relaxed, insouciant, prone to stay with their jobs (or their marriages) if they like them, to leave if they don't. Merchants offer free food and free booze; everyone offers free love. As New Yorkers revel in a small-town spirit of amiable fun, city officials, including the narrator, acting planning commissioner Jim Rowan, scramble to find a cure. Rowan also searches for his actress wife Niobe, who, struck by the virus, has left home and is hiding by convincingly impersonating characters around town, from a newspaper vendor to a Rockette. McHugh writes about New York in loving detail, from its infrastructure to such lost landmarks as the Astor bar, the Roxy and the Colony, evoking sharp nostalgia for Gotham in its glory days. But his bland, wisecracking tone soon palls, and he never quite communicates the soul of the city or the emotions of his characters. They remain period types, and despite its charming premise the novel remains a period piece.

Copyright 1991 Cahners Business Information, Inc.


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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By M. Allen Greenbaum HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on June 4, 2000
Format: Paperback
...so praised Lawrence Ferlinghetti of "I am Thinking of My Darling", adding "to read it is a little like having a 1940's New York City taxicab in your living room." Why this book hasn't become a popular classic is a mystery to me.
In his 1943 novel, McHugh draws a vivid portrait of sophisticated, urbane city unraveled by a mysterious disease. This epidemic attacks inhibitions: Friends, co-workers, even strangers drop spontaneously hug, celebrate, leave their jobs to pursue long-abandoned fantasies, and have guilt-free and always-safe sex. It's like "The Invasion of the Body Snatchers" in reverse--instead of producing automatons, the intruder recovers your humanity, releases the repressed id, and generally induces a madcap euphoria.
So, what's the problem? If you're protagonist Jim Rowan (a minor planning commissioner soon to become Mayor after the latter runs off to a model train convention), the problems are potentially enormous--maybe the trains don't have to run on time, but they do have to run. As do the hospitals, police department, fire stations, transportations systems, and other essential human services. It also doesn't help when your spouse catches the virus and runs amok in the city.
Part of the genius here is McHugh's mixing of the silly and the sexy with the practical and scientific. There are intelligent discussions of psychiatry, epidemiology, city planning, and philosophy placed with discretion amidst the delirium. And, although it inhabits a particular American past, the book's slightly cautionary hedonism has an admirable egalitarian stance: Men and women share in the equal employment of desire.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 14, 1997
Format: Paperback
It's not a classic, it's not even well known enough to have a cult following, but Vincent McHugh's "I am Thinking of My Darling" is about as good a comedic novel as ever has been written. Few books achieve the same level of graceful humor that distinguishes the old Hollywood screwball films of the thirties and forties, but this is one of the few that does. A disease infects the population of New York city; it results in the complete loss of one's inhibitions. People go wild in the streets, doing whatever they want. Thousands leave their jobs and spouses; sexual sprees and non-stop partying are the norm. The novel follows the adventures of the hastily installed mayor, who must impose order to the chaos, even while catching the virus himself. He spends the novel trying to track down his wife, at the same time sexual obliging about half a dozen women, including his beautiful black maid (in a novel written in the forties!). McHugh crams his narrative with a wealth of quirky details, and manages to even sneak in some pathos. I read it with a continual smile on my face. Simply a great book.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Patricia VINE VOICE on July 27, 2007
Format: Paperback
This novel is the basis for the wonderful 1968 movie, 'WHAT'S SO BAD ABOUT FEELING GOOD?", starring Mary Tyler Moore and George Peppard. In the movie, the "happiness virus" is carried by a Mexican Touchan bird. Other adaptations, (such as setting the story in 1968, and making the main characters, not the mayor and his wife, but a hippie and his girlfriend), may make the movie a bit different from the book.........but not much! I SO WISH THIS MOVIE HAD BEEN PUT OUT ON DVD......OR WILL BE! In the meantime, READ THE BOOK! Happiness IS possible! (Just KEEP saying that....and you just
might 'catch' the 'happiness virus'.....even right now!)

HAPPINESS LIVES! : )
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