Sex and Shopping: Confessions of a Nice Jewish Girl

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9780312251963: Sex and Shopping: Confessions of a Nice Jewish Girl

The autobiography of the popular novelist portrays her transformation from naive Wellesley graduate to sophisticated, world-traveled and acclaimed writer. By the author of Mistral's Daughter and Scruples. 75,000 first printing.

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Review:

She used to detest being labeled a "sex-and-shopping novelist," but now Judith Krantz accepts that it "will unquestionably be the first line in my obituary," so she's preempted the pundits by using it as the title of her breezy, earthy memoir. "On balance," Krantz concludes, "sex and shopping are both excellent things"--and she's had plenty of both. In her opening chapter, on the night train to Paris in 1949, about-to-be-21-year-old Judy Tarcher realizes, "Now that I was old enough to vote, I was old enough to lose my virginity." Thirty-three years later, when her husband wants to reach her in a hurry, he knows her habits well enough to find her in Beverly Hills, "dallying at the Saint Laurent boutique." In between, Krantz offers a frank account of her affluent childhood in New York City; college years at Wellesley; premarital affairs that led to a 1953 abortion (about which she is matter-of-fact and guilt-free); marriage to television executive Steve Krantz; and, of course, the string of bestsellers that began with Scruples, published when she was 50. Although Krantz settles a few scores (mostly with carping critics) in her blunt narrative, by and large it describes with infectious gusto a glamorous life enjoyed to the hilt. --Wendy Smith

From the Author:

Dear Reader,

As I was about to start my eleventh novel, I abruptly realized that I was making a huge mistake. On the verge of launching into the imagined world of a twenty-eight-year-old, I felt an intense need to tell another story, the story of a woman I know through and through...a woman with more wealth of experience, a woman who's seen more real glamour, known more fascinating people, lived in a world of more sophistication, and arrived at more hard-won maturity than that twenty-eight-year-old could hope for---in short, my own story. I've tried to remain as unknowable as possible, the better to let my heroines hold the stage, but now I was ready to tell the truth about myself, with no holding back.

I've had a different life from that of the majority of women of my generation and background. While I seemed like another "nice Jewish girl," underneath that convenient cover I'd traveled my own, inner-directed path and had many a spicy and secret adventure. I grew up in a complicated tangle of privilege, family problems, and tormented teenaged sexuality. After a riotous education at Wellesley, my life was turned upside down by a glorious year in Paris, marked by an intense but ill-starred romance. I spent the next half-decade in New York, sowing lighthearted wild oats until I finally met my true love, to whom I've been married for forty-six years.

When I was fifty I had an utterly unexpected, almost unbelievable success as a number-one bestselling novelist that has continued for book after book. Challenging, lucky, exciting, and often devastatingly askew, my life seems to have been lived under a wild and antic star.

I've had as much amazing fun as my heroines, and here's the book to prove it.

Judith Krantz

AUTHORBIO: Judith Krantz is the author of Scruples, Princess Daisy, Mistral's Daughter, I'll Take Manhattan, Till We Meet Again, Dazzle, Scruples Two, Lovers, Spring Collection, and The Jewels of Tessa Kent.

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