Thursday, July 02, 2009
Holland (Holly) Talbott, her husband, Tim, and son, Miles, live in a luxury apartment with a view of parades on Fifth Avenue. In an effort to please Holly, who is considering separation, and his own competitive ego, Tim makes a successful bid of $500,000 for an item in a charity auction: the right for Holly to play a corpse in the TV series “Law & Order.”
Tim, who has acquired a mistress, is a one-dimensional character like his conventionally obnoxious mother. The mother claims a connection with the ruling family of the late Austro-Hungarian empire, a claim that has produced a suitably imperial manner and the nickname Von. She tries to frighten Holly out of divorcing Tim.
It all makes “The Ex-Mrs. Hedgefund” (Jill Kargman) an entertaining read, especially for those not shocked by soft porn, as Holly sometimes is. The obligatory sex scenes are ample and explicit.
To get all the jokes, readers need an education in New York’s upper-class dialect, a smattering of Wall Street and more than an acquaintance with pop culture. To help get over the agony of her eventual divorce, which is seriously and convincingly described, Holly also enjoys a solitary, middlebrow jaunt to Rome and Florence.