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Chocolates for Breakfast (P.S.)

by

Chocolates for Breakfast (P.S.) Cover

ISBN13: 9780062246912
ISBN10: 0062246917
Condition: Standard
All Product Details

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Precocious and shocking when first published in 1956, Chocolates for Breakfast is a candid coming-of-age story of a young girls sudden awakening to love and desire written by 18-year-old Pamela Moore.
 
Disaffected, sexually precocious 15-year-old Courtney Farrell splits her time between her parents homes in New York and Los Angeles. When a crush on a female teacher in boarding school ends badly, Courtney sets out to know everything fast—from tasting dry martinis to engaging in a passionate love affair with an older man.
 
Considered an American response to French sensation Bonjour Tristesse, Chocolates for Breakfast is also a tale of Courtneys close and ultimately tragic friendship with her roommate, Janet Parker, and a moving account of how teenagers approach love and sex for the first time.
 
This edition of Chocolates for Breakfast features 16 pages of insights into the book, including author interviews, recommended reading, and more.

Review:

"Though the vernacular is straight out of the 1960s, the coming-of-age themes in the reissue of this classic from Moore, who died in 1964 at the age of 26, are timeless. Courtney Farrell, the 15-year-old daughter of a Hollywood screen star and Manhattanite father, leaves boarding school to live with her mother in L.A. Beautiful and more adult than child, Courtney rubs elbows and sips martinis with the Hollywood elite. Soon she loses her virginity to Barry Cabot, an effeminate 28-year-old womanizing actor. After enjoying 'the marvelous luxury of her own young body,' the inevitable heartbreak devastates Courtney, and she begins cutting to deal with her pain. Eventually, her mom's acting career takes a nosedive, and they're forced to move to New York, where Courtney searches for authenticity in a sea of spoiled rich kids and disaffected parents, who have money in abundance but little happiness. Shocking for its time, Moore's debut entranced a generation of teen girls bumbling through adolescence (and even takes credit for popularizing the name Courtney for girls), and will surely continue to resonate with audiences for years to come. (July)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Synopsis:

Courtney Farrell is a disaffected, sexually precocious fifteen-year-old. She splits her time between Manhattan, where her father works in publishing, and Los Angeles, where her mother is a still-beautiful Hollywood actress. After a boarding-school crush on a female teacher ends badly, Courtney sets out to learn everything fast. Her first drink is a very dry martini, and her first kiss the beginning of a full-blown love affair with an older man.

A riveting coming-of-age story, Chocolates for Breakfast became an international sensation upon its initial publication in 1956, and it still stands out as a shocking and moving account of the way teenagers collide, often disastrously, against love and sex for the first time.

About the Author

Pamela Moore was an American writer educated at Rosemary Hall and Barnard College. Her first book, Chocolates for Breakfast, was published when she was eighteen and became an international bestseller. Moore went on to write four more novels, but none of these enjoyed the success of her first. She died in 1964 at the age of twenty-six, while at work on her final, unpublished novel, Kathy on the Rocks.

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booksintheburbs, May 22, 2013 (view all comments by booksintheburbs)
There are books that have stayed with me for years, causing a shift in my thinking, making me see things a little differently, and taking me into a world that I want to leave, but I’m somehow drawn to stay and linger for a while. This book is reminiscent of , The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath, Valley of the Dolls by Jacqueline Susann, and Go Ask Alice by Beatrice Sparks. It’s such a great book, and deserves to be republished again!

What I love about Pamela Moore‘s writing is how easy her writing flows. She was only 18, when she wrote this brave and harrowing tale of a young teen that is on the brink of finding her own identity and independence, while also exploring her sexuality and living quite alone in Hollywood and later in New York. Back in 1956, women, much less teens, weren’t talking about cutting, uninhibited sex, and drinking. Certainly not opening the curtains into their own daily lives and giving a front row seat to the emotionally and sexually charged youthfulness that girls, like Courtney experienced. This book, being written by a teen, for teens, has crossed over generations to show that it still holds relevance to today-for all genders and ages.

Based on a semi-autobiographical history of Pamela’s youth, I couldn’t help but wonder if somehow Pamela was trying to regain some normalcy by writing and stowing away those dark reminders of her past. Much like the analogy Anthony gives of losing his shadow, I wonder if Pamela was trying to lose hers, too. Unlike books of today, Pamela’s book writes about her cutting, her curiosity about being “queer”, and the drinking parties, which are not told in such graphic and minute detail, but does lend itself to further interpretation by the reader. Pamela Moore’s writing is done with ease and a blazay attitude, that actually causes the reader to want to know more.

As I read this book, I couldn’t help but picture certain actors/artists in different roles being these characters. I kept seeing the young Drew Barrymore as Courtney and think that Drew could relate to Courtney’s character as they did have similarities. I also kept picturing a young pretty boy as Barry Cabot, like Jennifer Lopez’s young boyfriend (Casper Smart). I couldn’t help but see some similarities with Anthony as a young Andy Warhol, and Courtney being a bit Edie-esque in their last scene together. I could picture Cat Marnell playing Janet, as they both have issues with their respective fathers and unstable mothers. I also could see a bit of the neurotic and narcisstic personality in Courtney’s mom as actress Joan Crawford, without the wire hangers! So, that is a very rough draft of the characters I pictured in my mind, as I read this book.

One quote that seemed to be the central point of Courtney’s being was:

“they just want to bleed me white, and leave me battered by the roadside”. (p.88)

Courtney really did feel used, felt she could never love and didn’t want to be loved back. However, there were moments she felt “safe”. It was interesting how she wouldn’t allow herself to be loved, yet it was the one thing she truly did crave. Perhaps it was because she didn’t openly receive that from her parents and by denying others that opportunity, she could then validate that the reason her parents didn’t love her was because they weren’t allowed to…not because they in fact were incapable of giving it. It was her way of having some control over her destiny.

What was rather interesting, and disturbing, was that Courtney slept with 2 men who had bedded her two most important people in her life: her mom and her best friend. Al, her mother’s publicist, and Charles, a young man she meets, were her voices of reason throughout the book. They gave her that realistic side of what was happening, although she never fully opens herself up to them, either. It’s not until her best friend kills herself that Courtney feels she has a purpose in her life-to do what Janet couldn’t, which was to have a normal life and be married. While the story ends before finding out exactly what Courtney decides to do, her conversation with Anthony is rather poignant. Anthony tells her:

” ‘It isn’t a tragedy, angel. People like you, and me, and Janet-we’re not capable of tragedy. This was no epic play, with heroic characters and vast emotions. This was not a tragedy. It was a child’s game that came to an end. You haven’t any choice, darling. You’ve outgrown this. I can’t, you see. I can’t go on, anymore than Janet could. But you can.” (p.184,185).

There is so much more I can go on about in this book, such as the dead leaves that haunt Courtney, the lack of chocolate in the book, and the little boy who loses his shadow and his enchantment. However, it will lose its magic for you. While this book has been on many book lists for Lesbian fiction, this is a book that would make for a great book club pick, a book to be studied in Psychology or Sociology, and perhaps be that little book hiding under a stack of bills, that you secretly are reading. It’s a great book, one that will stay with you, and afterwards, please do have Chocolates for Breakfast, along with something fun in the sun! Otherwise, you are likely to spiral further down the rabbit hole!
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780062246912
Subtitle:
A Novel
Author:
Moore, Pamela
Publisher:
Harper Perennial
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade PB
Series:
P.S.
Publication Date:
20130625
Binding:
Paperback
Language:
English
Pages:
304
Dimensions:
8 x 5.3125 in 10.4 oz

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Related Subjects

Children's » Activities » General
Featured Titles » Literature
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » Coming of Age
Metaphysics » General

Chocolates for Breakfast (P.S.) Used Trade Paper
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$10.50 In Stock
Product details 304 pages Harper Perennial - English 9780062246912 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Though the vernacular is straight out of the 1960s, the coming-of-age themes in the reissue of this classic from Moore, who died in 1964 at the age of 26, are timeless. Courtney Farrell, the 15-year-old daughter of a Hollywood screen star and Manhattanite father, leaves boarding school to live with her mother in L.A. Beautiful and more adult than child, Courtney rubs elbows and sips martinis with the Hollywood elite. Soon she loses her virginity to Barry Cabot, an effeminate 28-year-old womanizing actor. After enjoying 'the marvelous luxury of her own young body,' the inevitable heartbreak devastates Courtney, and she begins cutting to deal with her pain. Eventually, her mom's acting career takes a nosedive, and they're forced to move to New York, where Courtney searches for authenticity in a sea of spoiled rich kids and disaffected parents, who have money in abundance but little happiness. Shocking for its time, Moore's debut entranced a generation of teen girls bumbling through adolescence (and even takes credit for popularizing the name Courtney for girls), and will surely continue to resonate with audiences for years to come. (July)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Synopsis" by , Courtney Farrell is a disaffected, sexually precocious fifteen-year-old. She splits her time between Manhattan, where her father works in publishing, and Los Angeles, where her mother is a still-beautiful Hollywood actress. After a boarding-school crush on a female teacher ends badly, Courtney sets out to learn everything fast. Her first drink is a very dry martini, and her first kiss the beginning of a full-blown love affair with an older man.

A riveting coming-of-age story, Chocolates for Breakfast became an international sensation upon its initial publication in 1956, and it still stands out as a shocking and moving account of the way teenagers collide, often disastrously, against love and sex for the first time.

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