The Bestseller

At Davis & Dash, one of New York’s most prestigious publishing houses, five new authors will be published–but only one of them will be a bestseller. They have worked long and hard to write their novels of romance and murder, drama and love. But the story behind the stories is even more exciting. And the vicious competition to get the right agent, the perfect editor, and the choice spot on the bestseller list must be seen to be believed.

Master novelist Olivia Goldsmith, bestselling author of The First Wives Club and Marrying Mom, takes a scathing and hilarious inside look at the deviously cutthroat world of publishing. She pierces egos, produces the dish, and punctures more than a few careers in this one-of-a-kind novel where dreams come true and writing is its own reward.For anyone pondering a career in publishing, The Bestseller–a fictional account of the frayed egos, sorted ideas, and strange economics that fuel the book industry–may be a dose of harsh reality. Olivia Goldsmith has created a tale of Davis & Dash, a Manhattan house run by an unspectacular publisher and a talented, but foul, editor. The new line of books doesn’t exactly threaten to populate the Pulitzer list, though there’s a serious 1,114-page work by a novelist who killed herself after her 23rd rejection letter. Goldsmith, who obviously deserves to be among the published, manages to puzzle these disparate pieces together into a cohesive story of the powers that be and those that hope to.

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Comments

  1. Goldsmith goes platinum with “The Bestseller”. Though I must admit Ms. Goldsmith’s stories have their faults (pat endings, too much anti-male rhetoric, and extremely dorky last names like Clapfish) her stories are damn entertaining. This one was definitely no exception. I read the thing in one sitting–something I’ve haven’t done in ages. The characters are cocky, funny, and very interesting. We’re given a very informative look inside the publishing business. Even though it was easy to guess who Peet Trawley (V.C. Andrews) and Susanne Baker Edmonds (Danielle Steel) are inspired by, it’s still kind of cool to see Ms. Goldsmith’s take on both of them. Terry’s overwhelming sense of rejection and Opal’s grieving are very sincere and realistic. The friendship between Opal and Roberta is genuine and touching. Even the bitchy Pam Mantiss (whose name is way too obvious)is fascinating and even sympathetic (in a weird villian sort of way)at times. I even loved that odd little fellow named GOD. Despite it’s flaws, I definitely recommend the novel. It’s one that you won’t get out of your head for a long time.

    Author Bill Peschel "Writers Gone Wild"
  2. A book to be read greedily Although The Bestseller isn’t flawless, it earns a 10 because it so enjoyable to read. As a former member of the lowest echelon of publishing house employees (the temp. worker), I can vouch that there is incredible tension to produce a hit. One might as well work in Hollywood. On the other hand, if there is actually any of the illegal or immoral activity that goes on in her book, I certainly didn’t know about it! Goldsmith accurately pigeonholed the view publishers take with manuscripts — they can’t just be great books, they must have a selling angle, such as a “Pink” (romance or other `women’s fiction), a “Dick” [a Tom Clancy-ish adventure or war novel], a “spook”[horror] or an “Uh-oh”[a murder mystery or suspenseful legal thriller]. One wonders if The Bestseller’s hot pink cover was some sort of subtle implication. From what little industry “insider knowledge” I had, I could tell that Goldsmith was using actual facts which I found troublesome on two levels. First, I don’t feel it’s fair of her to embarrass a famous author’s wife under the guise of fiction. Secondly, I would imagine that readers who didn’t know “the inside scoop” would feel a bit alienated. However, I would say that her use of real-life publishing power brokers such as Daisy Maryles or Phyllis Grann was effective in making her fiction seem very realistic. My one other issue with her story [STOP READING here if you don’t want any clues] involves one surefire book that inexplicably doesn’t pan out at all. She even has her characters marvel at the book’s demise, but it’s a bit too convenient. Despite this, The Bestseller is chock-full of solid writing and five great stories, all of which end in a perfectly satisfying manner.

    Anonymous

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