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The Woody Paperback – October 1, 1999
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The Woody is a classically constructed farce, with each misstep and muck-up piling on the ones below it, until it seems there's no way anything will work out. But eventually, miraculously, ridiculously, it does. Lefcourt offers enough twists and turns--and winking nods to real-life figures and scandals--to make for an enjoyable ride. Of course, if you take politics seriously, The Woody may be too close to the truth for comfort, but rest assured it's much, much funnier than those real-life shenanigans. The misadventures of Senator White will keep readers at all points on the political spectrum giggling for days. --Michael Gerber --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
More About the Author
Peter Lefcourt is a refugee from the trenches of Hollywood, where he has distinguished himself as a writer and producer of film and television. Among his credits are "Cagney and Lacey," for which he won an Emmy award; "Monte Carlo," in which he managed to keep Joan Collins in the same wardrobe for 35 pages; the relentlessly sentimental "Danielle Steel's Fine Things," and the underrated and hurried "The Women of Windsor," the most sordid, and thankfully last, miniseries about the British Royal Family.
He began writing novels after being declared "marginally unemployable" in the entertainment business by his agent. In 1991 Lefcourt published "The Deal"--an act of supreme hubris that effectively bit the hand that fed him and produced, in that wonderfully inverse and masochistic logic of Hollywood, a fresh demand for his screenwriting services. It remains a cult favorite in Hollywood and was one of the ten books that the late John Gotti reportedly ordered from jail.
Subsequently he has divided his time between screenplays and novels, publishing "The Dreyfus Affair" in 1992, his darkly comic look at homophobia in baseball as a historical analog to anti-Semitism in fin de siecle France, whose film rights The Walt Disney Company has optioned twice and let lapse twice in paroxysms of anxiety about what it says about the national pastime and, by extension, Disneyland.
In 1994, he published "Di And I," a heavily fictionalized version of his love affair with the late Princess of Wales. Princess Diana's own step-godmother, the late Barbara Cartland, herself no slouch when it came to publishing torrid books, declared the book "ghastly and unnecessary," which pushed the British edition briefly onto the bestseller lists. "Di And I" was optioned by Fine Line Pictures and was abandoned after Diana's untimely death.
"Abbreviating Ernie," his fourth novel, was inspired by his brush with notoriety after the appearance of "Di And I." At the time he was harassed by the British tabloids and spent seven excruciating minutes on "Entertainment Tonight." He was subsequently and fittingly bumped out of People Magazine by O.J. Simpson's white Bronco media event of June, 1994.
Lefcourt's research on a movie about the 1995 Bob Packwood scandal was the germ for his fifth novel, "The Woody." He saw the former senator's battle with the Senate Ethics Committee as evidence of the confusion in America regarding appropriate sexual behavior for politicians. Packwood became a sacrificial lamb by getting his dick caught in the buzzsaw of the zeitgeist.
His subsequent book, "Eleven Karens"--an erratically erotic fictional memoir of his love affairs with eleven women, all of whom happened to be named Karen, was published in 2003. He is still defending himself in a number of law suits brought by several of the apparently insufficiently fictionalized Karens.
He followed that with "The Manhattan Beach Project," a nominal sequel to The Deal, in that it follows the adventures of that book's hero, the intrepid Charlie Berns, who finds himself broke and attending meetings of the Brentwood chapter of Debtors Anonymous. Charlie manages to sell a reality TV show about the daily life of a warlord in Uzbekistan ("The Sopranos" meets "The Osbournes") to a secret division of ABC, named, appropriately, ABCD, charged with developing extreme reality TV series from a clandestine skunkworks in Manhattan Beach.
His latest book is entitled "An American Family," and it tells the story of an immigrant Jewish-American family on Long Island, beginning on the day John Kennedy was shot and ending the day before 9/11. This multi-generational saga, told from the point of view of five siblings born in the 1940's, traces the Pearl family's odyssey into the melting pot of twentieth century America.
He continues to dabble in film and television. He was the writer/creator of the Showtime TV series, "Beggars & Choosers," a darkly comic send-up of the television business. More recently, he spent a season in the writers' room of "Desperate Housewives," where he helped concoct some of the Byzantine plot lines of that infamous dark suburban soap opera.
Praise for Lefcourt's novels:
"You can count the wonderful novels about Hollywood on two hands...The Deal is one of them."
"...A hilarious romp through the world of national politics. [Lefcourt's] hapless hero is the perfect foil for all that's gone wrong in Washington...An irreverent, amusing read."
"This neon farce lights up the political spectrum to the left and the right of the primary colors...The Woody is like the best of farces, less interested in mocking historical figures and more keen to turn its light elsewhere."
"A good-natured romp through the dream factory of the 1990's."
--The New York Times
"Lefcourt flirts with offensiveness but never goes all the way."
Top Customer Reviews
The protagonist, Senator Woody White fends off a blackmailing spouse, a litigous ex-wife, a scary housekeeper, a politically connected Vermont maple syrup kingpin and a very angry Trent Lott, whose car Woody dented in the Senate parking garage. But he really begins to panic when he comes down with a unfortunate case of Erectile Dysfunction.
You'll be laughing out loud as you read this book and you won't be able to put it down until you've reached the surprising, hillarious, witty end. The political novel has been re-defined. Peter Lefcourt opens a new chapter in the genre with "The Woddy." Don't miss out...read it today!
Ever wonder what a gangster from Vermont would act and sound like? There are a few of those rare creatures prominently placed in the book, their leader being a character named John Quincy Adams. A kidnapped dachshund, the senator's lesbian wife, and a congressional bill for Tourette's Syndrome also form important chunks of the lighthearted plot.
Considering the current crop of fools in congress, Woodrow Wilson White would seem to fit right in. The strange thing is that unlike our real lawmakers, you actually come to like old Woody. Go figure. Also go read this book for some good laughs.
While this is a political novel, it is also politically incorrect one. Dachshunds, Tourette's Syndrome, and stutterers are among the many things satirically skewered by Lefcourt. The author also uses real-life political figures to further blur the line between fact and fiction (Trent Lott is involved in a key storyline and even Bill Clinton and Al and Tipper Gore make an appearance). Lefcourt is even so bold as to "borrow" a Herman Melville opening line -- "Call me, Ishmael." But unlike "Moby Dick" (wink, wink), the protagonist of this novel is talking into a cell phone to his chief of staff. "The Woody" will leave you asking "Can truth really be stranger than fiction?" But given what we DO know goes on in Washington DC -- cynically the answer is probably "yes." Overall, a very quick and enjoyable read.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Woody is a humorous satire about the trials and tribulations of a U.S. Senator with a zipper problem, who provides unconventional constituent services.Published on January 13, 2014 by j. emenhiser
I enjoyed watching the skewering of the Washington crowd. When you consider that this was published a while ago, the ongoing revelations of our elected officials at work supports... Read morePublished on May 15, 2013 by J.W.
If you are a political junkie, you will like this novel a lot. Woody White-- he may or may not be aptly named, depending on whether his hormones are challenged or not-- is a... Read morePublished on August 3, 2003 by Foster Corbin
I had never read any of Leftcourt's works prior to The Woody and I am ashamed I hadn't. This book had me rolling from the get-go. Read morePublished on February 24, 2003 by Jaha
i went to the book store and found The Woody while cruising the shelf. i've never been known to read political books, and was surprised when i started reading it and liked it, but... Read morePublished on January 26, 2003 by joe
I found this book on clearance for ... and decided that it was worth a shot. After the first few pages, I was hooked. Read morePublished on July 26, 2001
I should have known with a book titled Woody, and reading the cover should have been a clue, but I happened to be in the bookstore, choosing books with red, white and blue on the... Read morePublished on October 16, 2000 by Cindy Laughlin