A Novella

Book - 2000
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"Mirabelle, the image of fragile, feminine loveliness, is the shopgirl. She works in the glove department at Neiman's in L.A., where she's come to escape the provincialism of her Vermont hometown. And though she may remind people of Olive Oyl, once the resemblance is noted, many readers also will find a likeness to Chaplin's little tramp, the poor, lonely soul with a heart of gold. But Mirabelle is not just a shopgirl; she spends her nights toiling as an artist. Her specialty is creating a striking image surrounded by a black background. Mirabelle lives with two cats; one is always hiding. She has a few friends, who invariably forget to include her in their social activities, and she can barely claim the interest of Jeremy, an awkward, inexperienced young man without means, whom she met in a laundromat. Then, abruptly and mysteriously, Mr. Ray Porter, a millionaire, comes into her life. They becomes lovers, and that initiates the ire of Mirabelle's antagonist, Lisa Cramer. Cramer's aim in life is to be flawlessly pleasing to men, to which end she has viewed a few "educational' porno tapes," discussed techniques extensively with other women, and "once attended a class given by Crystal Headly, a down and going sex-film actress.""--Booklist.
Publisher: New York : Hyperion, c2000
Edition: 1st ed
Branch Call Number: FICTION MAR
Characteristics: 130 p. ; 22 cm
Alternative Title: Shop girl


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CRRL_MegRaymond Feb 26, 2018

Mirabelle is a shopgirl, selling gloves at Neiman Marcus in Beverly Hills. She meets a rich but lonely businessman named Ray. Are they both too shy to express their feelings for each other?

ArapahoeKati Jul 03, 2017

Quiet. Thoughtful. And frankly, astonishing. This is a novel I like to revisit every few years because it seems so realistic that it hurts.

Oct 18, 2012

This novella is an entirely cerebral look at a love affair. As such, it isn't emotionally grabby, but it does have a lot of insight into May-December relationships. SPOILER ALERT! It's interesting that the older man is the one who needs a lot of educating, but doesn't get it, and the younger man is the one who gets it (albeit somewhat accidentally) and comes back to Mirabelle intact, and altogether a much better bet for her in the end. I enjoyed this but it does come across as detached, as smichal says.

May 26, 2012

This book has a weird, detached tone. It was written from an outsider's point of view, not that of any of the characters. I found the story to be irritating and I wonder if it is autobiographical.

An old perv dates a pretty, depressed woman half his age, but really he has no interest in her. He's just using her for sex while he looks for somebody better (because he is immature for his, and he lets her know that he's banging other women and he keeps buying her gifts and doesn't realize or care that he is hurting her. GROSS. Finally she realizes she's being used and somehow still remains friends with him, and he starts thinking of her as more of a daughter.

Ya, right! This is very offensive.

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