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The Object of My Affection
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The Object of My Affection

3.78  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,188 Ratings  ·  66 Reviews
When 26-year-old George Mullen is kicked out by his lover, Robert, he moves into the terminally disordered apartment of Nina Borowski and embarks on the most complicated friendship of his life.
Hardcover, 316 pages
Published August 6th 1987 by Macmillan (first published 1987)
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Ian Not His Real Name
Friday Afternoon:

Ian: Don’t worry about cooking Saturday night, dumpling, I’ll take care of it.

F.M. Sushi: What have you got planned, love?

Ian: I was thinking of inviting George and Nina over for drinks and then going out for dinner.

F.M. Sushi: Who the fuck are George and Nina?

Ian: I met them on GoodReads.

F.M. Sushi: More of your pretend friends?

Ian: No. They’re real characters.

F.M. Sushi: Yes???

Ian: They’re pretend friends of Stephen McCauley.

F.M. Sushi: Yes???

Ian: They’re in “The Object of My
Aug 11, 2007 Punk rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: queer
Fiction. George is gay. Nina's pregnant. They fight crime! No, excuse me; I meant to say they're roommates. They share an apartment in Brooklyn and if Nina gets her way, once the baby comes they'll be sharing the parenting too. The first time I read this book, I didn't like it much. Now, ten years later, I thought I'd give it another try, but apparently neither of us has changed in the intervening years because I still find it dull and frustrating. It does have occasional flashes of playful lang ...more
Susan B.
Nov 22, 2007 Susan B. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Stephen MacCauley writes novels that are largely about relationships and the family in the context of the changing parameters of gay - straight relations. Like Elinor Lipman, his work is laugh out loud funny, laced with interesting and wry observations about the charming stupidities that humans - straight and gay - engage in over and over again, finally stumbling to something that looks like it might be a happy ending. I met him at a bookstore in Provincetown last year and he is very much like o ...more
I first read this sometime in the (presumably early) 90s, and found it captivating. Thus, when reunited with my books recently, it was one (of many) that I looked forward to rereading. While I was not quite as enamored of it the second time around, by the end I was nonetheless hooked again--it's sweet, charming, funny.
Carlos Mock
Aug 17, 2014 Carlos Mock rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The Object of My Affection by Stephen McCauley

Nina and George have been living in an apartment in Brooklyn for over a year when Nina announces she's pregnant. The father is none other than her boyfriend, Howard.

George Mullen came from Boston. He's currently a kindergarten teacher at St. Mikael's school and has broken up with his faculty adviser at Columbia, Robert Joley, with whom he lived for several months. George has a problem with any emotional involvement.

Nina Borowski is the daughter of P
Première lecture aboutie de l'année.
Premier titre issu de mon Challenge 2007.
Un livre en moins de ma PAL (eh oui! ça doit faire plus d'un mois que je n'ai plus acheté de bouquin!! Je tremble! Je tremble! brrrrrrr)
J'ai passé des agréables moments de lecture avec McCauley. Il s'agissait de mon premier roman de cet auteur, mais j'avais déniché une bonne occas sur ebay et m'étais déjà procuré ses autres bouquins....
Georges a quitté sa bourgade natale pour vivre la grande aventure New-York. Jeune ins
Apr 30, 2014 Neet rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book! I read it several times and it never gets old. The movie was just not the book. Jennifer Aniston was no Nina and Paul Rudd was certainly no George.I admit II went to see it and dragged a friend and felt like the wind was knocked out of me the way Hollywood hacked up my favorite book.Oh well, let's get to the book.This story takes place in New York ( Brooklyn to be precise) and we meet Nina & George, roommates, best friends, and confidants.George ended up living with Nina w ...more
Andi (A Literal Hottie)
Aug 02, 2011 Andi (A Literal Hottie) rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chick-lit
This book has a great significance in my life as it was the first book I read for pleasure, I wasn't a big reader before I picked up this book. There isn't anything special about it but I figured out that I like real life drama, not sc-fi, fantasy or romance, mystery,suspense or crime novels. It was reading this book when the lightbulb turned on....oh I do like reading.
Jan 01, 2011 Matilda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, lgtbq
I love this author. His books are pretty light but he has an interesting insight into interpersonal dynamics. I have read all his books, which are center around gay male characters. And even though they pretty much all have the same plot, I still keep my eye out for him, though he hasn't come out with anything forever.
Kris - My Novelesque Life

"George and Nina seem like the perfect couple. They share a cozy, cluttered Brooklyn apartment, a taste for impromptu tuna casserole dinners, and a devotion to ballroom dancing lessons at Arthur Murray. They love each other. There's only one hitch: George is gay. And when Nina announces she's pregnant, things get especially complicated. Howard -- Nina's overbearing boyfriend and the baby's father -- wants marriage. Nina wants independence. George will do anything for a little unqualified
Jan 22, 2011 Parker rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I always liked this movie, and I wanted to read the book. It was good -- although the movie characters (Jennifer Aniston, Paul Rudd) were in the mind the whole time I read it! I like this author and would read something else by him.... his characters are very realistic. Enjoyed!
Tim Evanson
Jul 11, 2015 Tim Evanson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm a major fan of Stephen McCauley's first two books, The Object of My Affection and The Easy Way Out. The former was made into a really awful motion picture with Jennifer Aniston, Paul Rudd, John Pankow, and Tim Daly. The motivations of the characters were completely changed, and a major sub-plot inserted that made no sense.

The novel is vastly superior. Like much of LGBTQ writing, it is full of witty, wry, cynical, thrust-and-parry writing that tries to speak to the bitchy drag queen in all of
Kathryn Grimes
Apr 29, 2014 Kathryn Grimes rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
After I read and loved this in 1987, I learned that my then-boyfriend had lent it to me as a test. If I didn't adore this book as much as he did, we wouldn't have a future together. Thank god I passed, and in 2014 we're still together and still both really like this book.
Oct 23, 2014 Lynn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very enjoyable, nothing deep or anything. The narrator comes across as good at heart, even though he keeps screwing up with his taciturn coldness. I can see that this is very movie-ready: it even has a scene in which the two lead characters move to the bed and then it "fades out." But ever since I found out that this was made into a movie with Jennifer Aniston and Paul Rudd in the lead parts, I'm having a hard time seeing them as these characters. She's not kooky enough and he doesn't seem witty ...more
Matt Kats
If you are a big fan of the movie, the book will be a disappointment. I much prefer the storyline in the movie.
Derrick Helphenstine
I remember wanting this to be my life. Read on the back of a motorcycle one summer on a trip with my dad.
Oct 07, 2013 Judi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book definitely hit a note with me. I've been an organizer of things most of my life and at times really into de-cluttering, so this story turned out to be something I could identify with. I'm thinking maybe at age 66 I could start a new career - or not. I liked the back and forth between Lucy and Marva and how they finally came to tolerate and then care for one another based on different ways of life. I got quite frustrated with Lucy's parenting skills with her addict son though - drove me ...more
Apr 08, 2016 PiedPiper rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My only regret is that I will never again read it for the first time.
Charity Kennedy
Mar 28, 2014 Charity Kennedy rated it it was amazing
It's too bad I can only give this book 5 stars. LOVED IT!
Dec 27, 2007 Robert rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

i loved this book when i read it in the early '90's - as gay literature was just emerging in its own right, it SO reflected my and my peer group's longings for real relationships, both romantic and non, i.e., how we can fit into this world, told through the story of a very non-"scene" oriented, human gay man.

(then hollywood botched it up by hiring wendy wasserstein to write the screenplay, completely changing it to make it the best girlfriend's story from her point of view - w
Jeremy Tucker
Jul 08, 2014 Jeremy Tucker rated it liked it
Witty, but ultimately not memorable.
Sort of a pre-Will & Grace story of a slightly disfunctional single woman and her loyal gay best friend. Their lives and loves go back and forth until they realize that they have to move on or become stuck in the disfunctional relationship they become muddled in. The writing is well done and the characters are fun to get to know. This is another one of thos novels I really enjoyed that was made into a poor film. While I liked the actors in the film, the script left out so much of what makes ...more
Katharine Holden
Okay. Parts are enjoyable. Overwritten. Self-conscious writing.
Feb 27, 2012 Kathryn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this because I found it at a used book store and I remembered seeing the movie (with Paul Rudd and Jennifer Aniston) on TV once a million years ago. I like the movie and I like the book, but it was odd because though the central premise and all the characters were the same they had been reshuffled into a completely different plot, which in some ways was frustrating because I like a couple parts of the movie better, but in other ways was really cool. It was like reading about an alternate ...more
Oct 10, 2007 Frederick rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Books About Apartment Dwellers
I read this in 1989 or so. My memory is that the chief relationship, that of two roommates, one a gay man and the other a straight woman, is handled realistically. The movie, which was glossy, does not capture it.
There is a certain comic sensibility in this novel. It is not slapstick. It is not particularly funny. But it offers exactly the right contrast to the more serious parts of the book.
This is about good people. That is always a novelty.
Jul 22, 2013 Gwen rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
Having not seen the movie (but harboring strong doubts about Jennifer Aniston's ability to pull off Nina), I'd advise people to not hold the book against the movie. I really enjoyed this novel and thought McCauley did an excellent job at creating three-dimensional characters, even ones I didn't particularly care for.

The ending, though, was a bit weak and happened all of a sudden--I think better closure would have been possible.
Jun 04, 2008 stacy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I can't remember if this is the first SM book I read but I remember going through a phase where I wanted to read every book he'd written (actually, I go through that phase w/every author I like). Thinking about the plot of this story and others, I feel like I've grown up a lot and I wouldn't be able to relate to the stories if I read them now. On the other hand, they were entertaining, fast reads. Good beach books.
Sep 18, 2007 Renee rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was made into a bad movie. Disregard the movie. This is one of my all-time favorite books. The story of the friendship b/w a straight girl and a gay guy is amazing. Their stories and feelings are so raw and their friendship so powerful. Both in their 20s, living in Brooklyn, NY. This story is so beautiful.
Sep 25, 2013 Julian rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gay-fiction
I guess I read this one a long time ago and forgot I had read it! About a third of the way through I was like "This is weirdly familiar..." Definitely a great one, and although the ending isn't what I would have hoped for it was nevertheless perfectly fitting for the characters and story.
A pleasant enough diversion, but kind of dated and mostly derivative. The thing I liked best is that Howard is difficult and abrasive, but a fundamentally good person who really loves Nina. It's unusual to see a character who is obnoxious but still good-hearted.
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