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Maynard and Jennica Hardcover – September 18, 2007


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; 1ST edition (September 18, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0618834486
  • ISBN-13: 978-0618834488
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 5.8 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,417,392 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

A heady, slippery dramedy-lite of modern love and urban manners, ex-lawyer Delson's debut puts native New Yorker Maynard Gogarty, a not quite talented composer/filmmaker, in the path of hardworking Californian Jennica Green, who arrives in New York to be illustrious. Shifting back and forth over the period 2000–2002, this cleverly pieced together story draws on 35 first-person narrators—including friends, family, a macaw, dead ancestors and an emergency brake on the train—to chronicle Maynard and Jennica's shifting roles as potential spouses, schemers, arrestees and exes. Their relationship comes to a head, natch, in the aftermath of 9/11, as the lovers' families meet for the first time. It's gimmicky, but the surprising ways each narrator connects with Maynard and Jennica make for small delights, and the interplay among the voices works often enough. Maynard's blistering riffs on how grief is coopted postcatastrophe end up giving insight into his character, and Delson's prose shimmers when describing the magic and romance of falling in love in New York. (Sept.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

New Yorker Maynard Gogarty, a wayward musician who has just sold rights to his art-house film, meets the introspective and resolute Jennica Green, a California transplant, on the subway in the summer of 2000. They shrug off the initial encounter, but when Jennica attends a screening of Maynard's eccentric film, the two plunge into a fervent relationship chronicled via an array of first-person narrators, including family members dead and alive, a hip-hop star, a Russian Israeli scam artist, and even a macaw. As the novel shifts in time and place, the narrators recount the churning, evolving relationship between the titular characters. Events culminate against the backdrop of September 11, coupled with a tense family gathering at a cabin in the Berkshires. Though at times the ruminations of secondary voices don't encompass the wistful peaks established through Maynard and Jennica's story, the varying narratives are effectively cohesive. Delson's clever debut is sharp and energetic, a highly original contemporary love story set against New York's invigorating urban landscape. Strauss, Leah

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Customer Reviews

This is a unique, witty and fun endeavor that was an overall good read.
Book Dork
As soon as I got engrossed in a scene or character, boom, it ended and some other voice was narrating and their narration did not flow coherently with the last piece.
Jody
I am glad I picked this book up at a discoun bookstore for less than 2 bucks.
read_read_read

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Sam Spade on September 25, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I picked this book up mainly because of the terrific jacket and the buzz I'd read about it and the author in USA Today. Well, it was 100% customer satisfaction as I read it cover to cover in no time! Delson has a terrific voice- this is laugh-out-loud funny, moving, touching, all at the same time. The characters stick with you, especially the title two- and anyone who's ever communted via public transportation will be envious of Maynard's filming of NY subway fashion faux pas. Theres a bit about 9/11 that was indeed memorable- I need to buy at least 4 more copies to get to friends. This one is absolutely worth it!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Stacey M Smith VINE VOICE on February 4, 2009
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This book does not follow a typical novel's path - it much more interesting! The author chooses to tell the story through a variety of characters (and inanimate objects) offering their own point of view & interpretation of events. At first I thought this might lead to lots of 'plot repeats" -- but actually, it's so well written that basically the characters are simply all adding pieces to a larger puzzle, ultimately giving the reader the "whole story." This is an example of an author elevating to mundane into something much more interesting.

M&J has a cinematic quality to it -- I could see it as a movie. A lot of fun.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Nice Lady VINE VOICE on December 16, 2009
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
In these difficult times, we can all find solace in a good book. What better way to while away the time than having a few good chuckles and belly-laughs.

Maynard and Jennica is the literary debut of the author Rudolph Delson.

The book takes place in Manhattan (a.k.a. New York City), starting in the Summer of 2000. Its characters then find themselves in the aftermath of September 11, 2001.

Rudolf Delson writes very well. Perhaps the true strength of this novel is the character development of the main people in this book.

Reminiscent of a funny sitcom like Mad About You or Seinfeld, this story focuses on the relationship of a young filmmaker-pianist (Maynard Gogarty) and a brilliant graduate of Princeton (Jennica Green). Initially they meet in typical New York fashion, riding uptown on the Number 6.

Although that first meeting is a short & delightful encounter, as fate would have it, they meet again. But, after the next meeting, they are head over heels.

Opposites attract, they say and of course, all around them, people wonder why they are together. But their relationship just works..............

Don't miss this book. It is extremely well written, a quick read, and a highly enjoyable and exhilarating experience!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jessica on July 4, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book isn't going to be everyone's cuppa. I sampled the beginning and liked the writing, so I bought the book. I think the writing was fantastic in lines like getting mugged by the wind; the heart bubbling like a water dispenser, with a bubble jellyfishing to the surface; Maynard doing the panting stallion yoga pose; and an event that causes your memory to put a post-it sticky on it as a reminder to tell your sig. other. Plus, you don't get to read an argument between crickets and frogs every day. I thought it dragged in parts, especially the sections on Ana's parents. For the most part I thought the book was interesting, well written, funny at times, and different than the usual book out there. At times the multiple perspectives felt like a bit much, but in general it kept the book moving and I could read it in short bursts. I'd read another book by this author.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Maria E. Garcia-bodoh on August 16, 2009
Format: Paperback
The beginning is definitely packed with characters' accounts, and it took me some time to process it. But, as a whole, I found the book is very well-written, the story is captivating, and the author's style fascinating and effective. I must comment Rudolph Delson on the skill with which he developed the characters in this book. His attention to detail and the different points of view gave them credible life.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By K. B. Fenner VINE VOICE on July 28, 2009
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Set mostly in Manhattan during the months before and the weeks just after September 11, 2001, this offbeat romantic comedy manages to be effervescent, insightful, witty and truthful. The story is told by a rotating cast of characters, who digress and dissimulate and generally relate a story just about as directly and reliably as any witness might--which is to say with a strong dose of personal bias and unintended self-revelation. Each character, no matter how minor, is somehow clearly drawn through their narrative, and each character is plausible while being wonderfully colorful.

Maynard is a very odd film-maker pianist ne'er-do-well from a wealthy New York family and Jennica is a Princeton graduate from a progressive, nominally Jewish California clan. They meet "cute," of course, but the story is told in an engrossingly mysterious, circuitous, digressive style. By the time the couple gets together, we know them well enough that the ensuing situations are richly rewarding, much as those on a much-loved, high-quality TV sit-com like Seinfeld might be.

Despite the potentially confusing, changing cast of narrators, this is a very easy, enjoyable read that nonetheless is satisfying. Five stars!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Robert A. Grossman VINE VOICE on June 13, 2009
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Beginning writers are often told to "find your voice." First time author Delson takes this advice and turns it on its head, resulting in a very unique storytelling device that captivated me from beginning to end.

Maynard and Jennica are but two of the voices as a whole Greek chorus joins them in telling their love story. We hear from friends and family, but also the super, the lawyer, and insects! Each voice adds a texture to the weave of the story. All points of view are delivered with the author's dry wit. I was amused by everyone in this book, and there are over 30 unique voices that Delson brings to life on the page.

Two "characters" in the book figure prominently but never "speak:" New York City and California. I can't wait to find out where the author sets his next novel. It is sure to be a fun outing wherever he goes.
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