Very Nice: A novel (Vintage Contemporaries) (Paperback)
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“A juicy tale of bad behavior.... Very Nice gets pretty mean—but gloriously so.” —Entertainment Weekly
Rachel Klein never meant to kiss her creative writing professor, but with his long eyelashes, his silky hair, and the sad, beautiful life he laid bare on Twitter, she does, and the kiss is very nice. Zahid Azzam never planned to become a houseguest in his student’s sprawling Connecticut home, but with the sparkling swimming pool, the endless supply of Whole Foods strawberries, and Rachel’s beautiful mother, he does, and the home is very nice. Becca Klein never thought she’d have a love affair so soon after her divorce, but when her daughter’s professor walks into her home, bringing with him an apricot standard poodle named Princess, she does, and the affair is ... a very bad idea.
Zigzagging between the rarefied circles of Manhattan investment banking, the achingly self-serious MFA programs of the Midwest, and the private bedrooms of Connecticut, Very Nice is an audacious, addictive, and wickedly smart take on the way we live now.
About the Author
Marcy Dermansky is the author of the critically acclaimed novels The Red Car, Bad Marie, and Twins. She has received fellowships from the MacDowell Colony and the Edward F. Albee Foundation. She lives with her daughter in Montclair, New Jersey.
“Brisk. . . . Seductive. . . . Very funny. . . . I’m in awe of it.”
—Rumaan Alam, The Washington Post
“Dermansky is one of my favorite writers. I inhaled Very Nice in a matter of hours. It’s a vicious novel, full of terrible people behaving terribly and I could not get enough.”
“A tart lemonade of a summer read. . . . A decidedly modern update to John Cheever’s suburbia.”
“A messy, sexy, super fun drama. . . . Impossible to put down.”
“Very Nice is so sexy and reads so smooth that I was utterly addicted. Trenchantly observed and darkly funny, it will stick with you long after you finish its final, ferocious sentence.”
—Maria Semple, bestselling author of Where’d You Go, Bernadette?
“A mordant satire of wealth and art.”
—The New York Times Book Review
“Subtly riotous. . . . Very Nice is a wickedly fun and emotionally potent farce.”
—O, The Oprah Magazine
“Very Nice features a very spoiled apricot poodle, very yummy breakfasts of avocado toast, and a very naughty mother-daughter-professor love triangle—it’s everything you need in your new favorite summer novel, and makes me very relieved I never got my PhD.”
—Kevin Kwan, bestselling author of Crazy Rich Asians
“A juicy summer read with admirable substance.”
“[An] addictive story of money, sex, and bad house manners.”
“Marcy Dermansky is a light switch, a volume knob, a fire drill. Her novels are bright and attention-grabbing, from the first page to the last, and Very Nice is her best yet. This smart, sexy, funny book is a balm for rattled nerves.”
—Emma Straub, bestselling author of Modern Lovers and The Vacationers
“Hilarious. . . . Features a small cast of wickedly funny characters and a plot straight out a Shakespearean romance.”
“A smart yet wacky summer diversion . . . a book that will make you both laugh and gasp out loud.”
“Very Nice is deceptively polite, a gracious rebuke to every writer who has sworn it’s impossible to write about the times in which we live. Marcy Dermansky found the way in, spotted the connections holding our fragmented world together and made them sing.”
—Laura Lippman, bestselling author of Sunburn
“A sardonic skewering of self-aggrandizing MFA programs, investment banking, and ‘nice’ wealthy suburbs that tend to have seedy secrets bubbling right underneath their shiny veneers.”
“This is the buzzy, breezy summer read you’ve been craving all summer.”
“Sly, deceptively simple and thoroughly seductive. . . . [Dermansky’s] sharp satire spares none of the characters and teeters brilliantly on the edge of comedy and tragedy.”
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“A hell of a lot of stylish fun. Can you top this? is the question posed by each chapter of this upmarket soap opera, and the answer is always yes.”