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Looking for Mr. Goodbar (Washington Square Press.) Paperback – October 1, 1997
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Theresa is still very much the good Catholic girl, however, and she still loves children. Her decision to become an elementary school teacher allows her to temporarily step into the role of "Mother" (nurturer) and "Father" (educator), to be simultaneously the parents she wished she had. It is during her college years that she meets Martin Engle, a sardonic English professor who will have a profound effect on her already shaky self-image. Martin is married, but he is still very much adored by his female students, and he does nothing to overtly discourage them.Read more ›
Looking for Mr. Goodbar was an unconscionably shocking novel when it appeared in 1975. It was still shocking when Richard Brooks turned it into a devastating film featuring rising stars Richard Gere, Tom Berenger, and William Atherton as the three most important men in Diane Keaton's life. Now, here we are thirty years later. The scene Rossner set isn't shocking. But in some ways, her treatment of it is, and this is why Looking for Mr. Goodbar is still in print, three decades after its original release.
Theresa Dunn, we learn on the first page, is dead. She was killed by a guy she picked up in a bar a few hours beforehand (leading to Rex Reed's famous, and utterly inaccurate, statement "this is the story of what happens to Theresa in bars."). We go from police report to said guy's statement, which is equal parts amusing and chilling. Then the rest of the novel's three hundred ninety pages gives us Theresa's story as it leads up to her murder.
Despite Reed's tantalizing review, Theresa Dunn is not the kind of barhopper one might find in a bad seventies softcore movie. In fact, she spends not much time at all in bars themselves. (Mr. Goodbar, the name of the bar where she picks up the guy who kills her, is only mentioned by name twice in Theresa's portion of the story, if I recall correctly.) The novel actually focuses on Theresa's relationships, and how they contribute to the novel's outcome-- first with one of her college professors, and then conflicting, simultaneous relationships with two men, the macho and aggressive Tony and calm, staid James, as Theresa tries to figure out who she really is and what she wants from life.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very good book that both men and women can enjoy. Theresa should not have done it,but she did. She won't be back. Good-bye.Published 1 month ago by Roy Bush
Great book! Amazing how women get viewed negatively when they express their sexuality, but men are high-fived for their conquests.Published 2 months ago by KA
This is the story of a young woman who is one of the most self-destructive characters I have ever encountered. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Linda W.
I saw the movie first, so this book was a let down to me. Not quite the same story. I never felt like I really got to know the real life character at all.Published 4 months ago by Joanie
Theresa Dunn is a “good girl” from a stable Catholic family in the Bronx, raised to appreciate family values, and slightly under-confident after a childhood bout with polio. Read morePublished 6 months ago by B. Wolinsky