This One Is Mine
By Maria Semple
(Little, Brown and Company, Hardcover, 9780316031165, 304pp.)
Publication Date: December 2008
Other Editions of This Title: Paperback
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Violet Parry is living the quintessential life of luxury in the Hollywood Hills with David, her rock-and-roll manager husband, and her darling toddler, Dot. She has the perfect life--except that she's deeply unhappy. David expects the world of Violet but gives little of himself in return. When she meets Teddy, a roguish small-time bass player, Violet comes alive, and soon she's risking everything for the chance to find herself again. Also in the picture are David's hilariously high-strung sister, Sally, on the prowl for a successful husband, and Jeremy, the ESPN sportscaster savant who falls into her trap. For all their recklessness, Violet and Sally will discover that David and Jeremy have a few surprises of their own. THIS ONE IS MINE is a compassionate and wickedly funny satire about our need for more--and the often disastrous choices we make in the name of happiness.
Maria Semple has written for television shows including Arrested Development, Mad About You, and Ellen. She has escaped from Los Angeles and lives with her family on an island off Seattle. This is her first novel.
"A fresh, flamboyantly witty new voice."
-Helen Fielding, author of Bridget Jones's Diary
"Once I started this book, I couldn't put it down. It is funny, carefully observed, beautifully written, very knowing and in general a real treat. Stop wondering which book to buy. Buy this one."
-Merrill Markoe, author of Walking in Circles Before Lying Down
"This delightful novel gives pleasure on every page. Deftly satiric, wickedly hilarious, brilliantly plotted to ensure maximum mayhem, it also sustains a sweet, triumphant tenderness towards characters who act so appallingly. If at first it seems a puzzle that the novelist can inspire such rueful yet endearing affection for these too-often greedy, shallow people, the answer is that we come to recognize them-as us."
"[A] sharp-witted look at having it all in L.A. and wanting more.... Semple has the prime-time satire gene."
"Maria Semple's remarkable first novel isn't just a witty, sharp-edged satire about adultery, social climbing, and the absurdities of L.A. On a deeper level, This One is Mine is a complex, unexpectedly moving story about the risks and rewards of love, in all its irrational glory."
"Maria Semple begins like a roller coaster, clacking up slowly and ominously and then, Hold on! You are plunging into the great dreamworld of LA money and ambition where nothing is quite real until it breaks apart and suddenly there is the terrible bottom and end of it all. This is a love story with real thorns and a heroine you will weep for."
-James Salter, author of Light Years and Last Night
"[A] smart and funny debut.... Semple's takes are tack sharp as her delightful cast is driven comically and tragically ever deeper into a culture of artifice. Semple obviously knows her turf, and she does an exquisite job of stomping all over it."
"Maria Semple writes like a cross between Dorothy Parker and Nathanael West. This One Is Mine is an uncompromising and trenchantly funny portrait of Los Angeles life that rings uncomfortably true."
"Maria Semple delves unafraid, with a sharp eye and sharper hand, into the big issues: Love, Happiness, Life and Death, and emerges with a Los Angeles we never knew, but always suspected. A triumphant debut."