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3.24  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,076 Ratings  ·  203 Reviews
The critically acclaimed author of Good-bye and Amen, Leeway Cottage, and More Than You Know returns with a sharply perceptive and emotionally resonant novel about all the ways we talk about one another, the sometimes fine line between showing concern and doing damage, and the difficulty of knowing the true obligations of friendship.

Loviah “Lovie” French owns a small, high
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published March 20th 2012 by William Morrow (first published 2012)
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Nov 14, 2015 Bonnie rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
My rating: 1.5 of 5 stars
A copy of Gossip was provided to me by William Morrow for review purposes.

'Interesting how things change: the people you thought would be friends forever disappear, and others become more and more important to you over time.'

Lovie French is a sixty year old boutique owner living in Manhattan and is the narrator of the story. She is still close to her two best friends, Avis and Dinah, that she went to school with when they were young and over time their families have beco
Mar 28, 2012 Nancy rated it liked it
My thoughts: Gutcheon has a solid writing style and POV. I really have no strong opinions one way or the other with this book. It's about three women who went to an elite high school and had Lovie as the connecting point. Avis is the older of the three and much more refined. She marries rich albeit older and has a daughter named Grace.

Dinah's character is solid and remains unchanging. She is loud, fun and irreverent. She marries Richard and has two sons; one is responsible and the other is not.
Jennifer Louden
Oct 18, 2012 Jennifer Louden rated it liked it
I loved this book and could not stop reading it - a smart contemporary Edith Wharton mini-saga. Love Gutcheon's writing in general - her books have long been favorites. Then why not 4 stars?

The mean spirit that creeps in - not from the author but from the characters - hurt to read. I totally bought it but didn't like it.

The main - yet still minor - downgrade for me was the focus on how women look, and how that is part of their worth. Again, this is central to the story. I get that. But it piss
Book Him Danno
Loviah French is stuck. Having come from the wrong side of the tracks she has gotten into an elite prep school on scholarship. While there she belongs without belonging, ultimately graduating with two opposite, but life long friends. Instead of attending college like them, she instead interns with a high end dress shop, ultimately becoming an in-demand dresser for the rich and famous; including her friends. She has a relationship with a married family man, stealing bits of time and happiness ar ...more
Apr 30, 2012 Amanda rated it it was ok
About halfway through this book I remember thinking that it was exactly what I needed. I'd been doing some heavier reading and Gossip seemed like a nice, light, chick-lit book that I could really enjoy without becoming super emotionally involved.

I was wrong. First, I hated the ending. Absolutely hated it. Second, nothing good happens in this book. Out of all the characters there are seriously no "happy ever afters". None. Third, the writing felt kind of empty, almost like someone was telling yo
Oct 23, 2012 Rori rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 19, 2014 Elizabeth rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. I can't explain all the 'whys' right now. I loved it. period. I'm not going to try to pick it apart and explain. It fit me at just the right time or maybe it would fit me at anytime. I don't know what other books this author has written but I will look into them.

I was thinking a bit more about Gossip. I felt it had a bit of an abrupt ending, Part of me feels like that abruptness was perfect and echoed some aspects of abruptness throughout the book. Another part of me was annoy
Dec 12, 2015 Skylar rated it liked it
I think the best way to describe this book is its title: "Gossip", the book sounded pretty much like the bubbly chatter of maids between chores, more than once I had to stop and make sure the pages were truly in order and not in disarray because it surely felt that way jumping from one topic -or date- to another then turning all the way back to pick up a thought.
But there was something intriguing about the characters,you really feel like you want to know about them, it just felt pretty strange a
Gossip is a book that I probably wouldn't have picked for the blurb on the back alone but I did like the cover and felt that this would have pushed me into buying it.

To be honest I didn't really connect with the book; I found there was little to keep me interested, the characters were flat and I found it hard to relate to them, the story line was very slow and I really struggled to keep up with what was going on with all the jumping about in the past and present. It felt a confusing read not one
Samantha Janning
Apr 05, 2012 Samantha Janning rated it it was ok
Some books I just can’t connect with, and unfortunately Gossip by Beth Gutcheon was one of those. I was looking forward to this book – who doesn’t love some gossip and I thought the cover was really cute - but it just fell flat for me. The beginning started off slowly – way too slowly – and it was downhill for me from there. The story is narrated by Lovie Walker, yet the POV is divided amongst her and two other characters. There’s a lot of jumping between past and present and POV that made it ha ...more
Mar 22, 2012 Jael rated it really liked it
Ever read a book and thought, "It's ok, but not great." That's what I was thinking as I was nearing the end of Gossip by Beth Gutcheon. ... But then you get to the end, and you're opinion TOTALLY changes. You start thinking deeper about everything you just read.

Gossip, what does it really mean? I always thought it was a rumor spread by a bunch of spiteful and nosy people. I still think that, but the original meaning was talk between two people who are the godparents of the same child. Interestin
Jan 29, 2013 Karen rated it did not like it
Shelves: fiction
I've read all of Beth Gutcheon's books years ago. I love how each chapter usually deals with a separate character in the book and then later on in the book it all comes together. Gossip had about every other paragraph dealing with another character's story/life moment. It was too scatter-brained for me to really follow the story line without getting annoyed with some other non-necessary tid-bit of information on someone that just didn't seem to fit the mood of the page I was on.

Halfway into the
Mar 18, 2012 Sandie rated it liked it
How tenacious is that inborn instinct to know all there is to know about other human beings and to distribute our knowledge to those around us. Most of us prefer to think gossip is just a "sharing" of information, but often this sharing is destructive and occasionally even deadly.

GOSSIP is the new offering by Beth Gutcheon that relates the story of Dinah, Avis and Loviah "Lovie", three women from diverse backgrounds who form an unlikely bond while at boarding school, and follows their relationsh
May 14, 2012 Patty rated it it was amazing
Beth Gutcheon

My summary...

Girls from various backgrounds attend Miss Pratt's Boarding School. The novel follows them throughout their lives but the focus is mostly on Lovinia, Dinah and Avis. You can tell from their names that it is sort of the olden days.

My thoughts...

Oh my...I really did love this book. From the girls first meetings...some in the right clothes, others in the not so right clothes, and still others in homemade clothes...I was into this book.
It mostly takes place in New
Fiona Valpy
Jul 15, 2013 Fiona Valpy rated it really liked it
At first I thought this was simply a stylish and entertaining read about New York society, spanning several decades. But as I continued I realised there was a much more serious message here too. Why is it that we are so inclined to talk about the things we shouldn't, and to avoid talking about the things we SHOULD?
Oct 24, 2014 Cara rated it it was ok
Shelves: fun-or-frivolity
I think I've loved every other Beth Gutcheon book I've ever read, so I was delighted to discover this one--I thought I had read all of her books already! But I didn't really like this one very much. It's kind of dry, I guess because it's told from the perspective of an elderly lady. But more than that, almost nothing positive happens in it. Almost everything is bad, bad, and more bad. I guess I should have expected that from a book called Gossip, but if anything, I figured the gossip would be am ...more
Apr 14, 2015 Jeni rated it did not like it
Don't waste your time. These are the most unlikeable characters, snobby, uppity, self-centered, more worried about appearances than morals. The main character is a mistress for 40 years and at one point when she is distressed over a friend's possible divorce she actually asks if no one practices self control anymore...what a load of ironic hypocrisy. And the end was just for shock factor...almost as if the author knew she'd written a mundane account of spoiled debutantes and needed some grisly o ...more
Debbie Lambert
Feb 26, 2016 Debbie Lambert rated it really liked it
This was the book I didn’t think I’d like, but it turned out to be decent. A story about friends from a girls boarding school, after they grew up. The life style of the rich and famous and elite. Dinah, is the big mouth charismatic one who marries money (but gets dumped). Avis, an Art Historian, marries a man 20 yrs older (an absolute drunk), who is an art collector, and they have a child, Grace. And Loviah French, who dresses all the elite women in Upperside Manhattan and hears a lot of gossip ...more
Aug 07, 2012 Lorna rated it did not like it
Shelves: audiobook
Read as more of a history of Lovie and her friends than as a narrative. Had trouble keeping characters straight, didn't see a lot of continuity between the characters in their youth vs as they aged. Just didn't care about their problems.
May 26, 2016 Susan rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This is a weird book. Ending and dramatic occurrence was very odd. Beth Gutheon is a very good writer but reading this book you wonder what's the point. She had a potential for an award-winning great novel, but this is just rambling, disjointed almost a collection of short stories about New York. I enjoyed the characters and the stories but there is no point or theme, it sort of just rambles on. You read it hoping that you will discover what it is about. Gossip really isn't an appropriate title ...more
A social chronicle

Gossip follows three girls from the same boarding school through their late middle age, as their lives intersected in New York, from the 1970s into the 2010s. Narrated by one of them, the book chronicles not only the changing times and mores, but the prevalence and impact of gossip, from the gossip columns of one, to the overhead catty conversations at private clubs, to the tragic impact of this gossip within the small village of socialites in their overlapping circles in the c
Jun 15, 2015 Amy rated it liked it
At first glance, this book might appear to be basic chick-lit fluff. However, I found that it reminded me of "The Group" by Mary McCarthy. The book is about the lives of several women who meet at boarding school when they are teens. The story follows two of them (both socialites in NYC) who are not friends who but are linked together by a third (a poor scholarship student who becomes friends with both and serves the function as narrator/observer of their lives). It might just be me, but I get an ...more
Jun 09, 2014 Anne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loviah French, or 'Lovie' as she is known, is piggy-in-the-middle. She met and made friends with both Dinah and Avis when they all attended the same boarding school back in 1960. Dinah and Avis are worlds apart, and can't stand each other, yet both of them are great friends to Lovie.

The story is set in New York and is told in the voice of a now middle-aged Lovie. Lovie is looking back on her friendship with the other two women and Gutcheon's tells the story of how they all grew to be the women t
Sep 20, 2014 Joodith rated it liked it
This book takes us from the 1950's when three young girls, Loviah, Dinah and Avis, meet at boarding school. Loviah, the narrator of the story now owns a small boutique dress shop catering for New York high society; Dinah, with her sarcasm and zest for life finds her perfect role as a gossip columnist whilst quiet, self-effacing Avis is an art buyer for wealthy art collectors.

Loviah gently takes us through the stories of their loves, lives, marriages and everything in between through the decades,
Jan 21, 2014 Julie rated it really liked it
I had to reflect for a few weeks before I could sum up what worked about this book. Beth Gutcheon has yet to disappoint me.

Gutcheon created a novel that reveals the same level of intimacy about the characters that the characters reveal to each other. And to brilliant effect.

Three women, each from different socio-economic and societal backgrounds, find their lives interwoven through friendship, animosity, and life's painful moments. As they age, they move in elite New York social circles of varyi
Jul 04, 2012 Antoinette rated it really liked it
You truly can't judge a book by its cover, and this novel is a prime example. It looks like chick lit and sounds like chick lit, so it must be chick lit, no? No. (But there are high heels AND pink type on the front! Has the whole world gone topsy-turvy?) It's actually a thoughtful novel about society circles. It's about what's said to others and, sometimes more important, what isn't said.

The narrator is a member of a group I occasionally wish I could join: those who can keep their opinions to th
Donna Jo Atwood
This is one of those books that you almost don't read because the title makes it sound like a mindless little chick lit or teen angst-y thing and that's not what you're in the mood for right now. Well, in this case, the title is misleading--and spot on at the same time.

Lovie has been friends with Dinah and Avis (who are not "best" friends with each other) since they were boarding school classmates in the 1960s. It is now fifty years later and we find out where the friendships have led. In a way
Wendy Hines
Jul 07, 2013 Wendy Hines rated it really liked it
What a great novel! Lovie is the storyteller, a woman who owns a small dress shop in Manhattan and holds dearly onto all the dark secrets of her clients. Two of them, Dinah and Avis, she went to boarding school with and they've stayed friends though-out the years. But now Dinah and Avis's children are in a relationship and hopefully all those secrets - stay secrets, or not only will their relationship be in trouble, but the three woman's friendships and those that it affects - much like a domino ...more
Alexis Villery
Three women connected through an elite boarding school grow through life's trials and tribulations. Where Avis is quiet and refined, Dinah is outgoing, loud, and fun. Avis marries an alcoholic and raises her only daughter, Grace with the help of her stepmother and the nanny. Dinah marries and has two boys. One is responsible and the other wanders through life without much direction and undecided about his goals. Lovie finds herself solidly in the middle of both. She chooses a life as an outsider ...more
May 12, 2012 Candace rated it liked it
Gossip, by Beth Gutcheon, is a novel surrounding a group of well to do friends living in Manhattan's Upper East Side. The story is told from the view point of Lovie, an unmarried, sixty-something high end boutique owner. Without a family of her own, Lovie considers her two best friends and their children her family. Dinah is a well known and equally high maintenance gossip columnist/author/aspiring chef. Quiet and dignified Avis is a successful high end art dealer. In these three women Gutcheon ...more
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Beth Gutcheon grew up in western Pennsylvania. She was educated at Harvard where she took an honors BA in English literature. She has spent most of her adult life in New York City, except for sojourns in San Francisco and on the coast of Maine. In 1978, she wrote the narration for a feature-length documentary on the Kirov ballet school, The Children of Theatre Street, which was nominated for an Ac ...more
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“Damned no matter what you do. Why do people think knowing secrets is fun?” 1 likes
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