Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “East Side Story: A Novel” as Want to Read:
East Side Story: A Novel
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

East Side Story: A Novel

3.42  ·  Rating Details ·  144 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
"Louis Auchincloss has an enveloping story to tell and a perfect, understated knowledge of those who inhabit it," said the New York Times of The Scarlet Letters. The same can be said of Auchincloss's new novel, a tour de force that charts the rise of one uncommon family in America's grand city.
How did the families who live on Manhattan's Upper East Side get to where they
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published December 2nd 2004 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (first published January 1st 2004)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about East Side Story, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about East Side Story

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Ron Charles
Dec 20, 2013 Ron Charles rated it really liked it
I can't decide whether this news spurs me to action or sends me back to the chaise longue with a bowl of cookie dough: At 87, Louis Auchincloss has just published his 60th book. To add insult to injury, it's really good.

Speaking to The Atlantic Monthly in 1997, Auchincloss explained his prolific output with a little Mary Poppins wisdom: "By mastering the ability to use five minutes here, 15 minutes there, I picked up a great deal of time that most people allow to drift away." And I bet the dishe
Aug 30, 2014 Manray9 rated it really liked it
Shelves: american-lit
I knew of Louis Auchincloss. I was aware of his prodigious literary production (60 books!), his writing career paralleling that of a successful trust and estate attorney to New York City's upper crust families, and the fact he was cousin to Jackie Kennedy. I didn't know he was so good. Browsing my usual book websites, I stumbled across Auchincloss on -- a favorite stop and a great Internet source for lovers of fiction written before yesterday and featuring not a single vam ...more
May 01, 2010 Edward rated it liked it
Louis Auchincloss died in January, 2010, at the age of 93, the author of 58 works, many fiction, but a good number of biographies as well. This is the second of his that I've read, the other being THE RECTOR OF JUSTIN. It's a fictional account of a wealthy and influential old New England family, the Carnochans, made of up eleven vignettes of family members, spanning nearly a century. For the most part, these are pretty ordinary people who delude themselves that they are somebody important only ...more
Oct 08, 2008 Ginny rated it liked it
With a lineage chart at the beginning of the book, various family members tell the story, with a chapter provided by each one. Interestingly, it is not in chronological order, so each chapter is a piece of the puzzle of what makes a family and how its traditions/characteristics are carried to the next generation. The major emphasis being that this family has lots of money and the advantages that come with being wealthy. The story ends with LouLou who didn't marry a rich man or inherit a lot of ...more
Mar 22, 2015 Rosemary rated it liked it
Manners and morals, ambition, love and service in a Scottish Presbyterian family, the Carnochans, in the 19th and early 20th centuries told chapter by chapter by the various family members. Makes them more three dimensional, no one is all good or bad, although there is a general tendency towards financial success at the expense of feelings and thoughtfulness.
Nov 27, 2010 Christina rated it liked it
Shelves: new-york-city
I picked this book up after randomly coming across it in goodreads and liking what I read. I've been more interested in family lineage and family trees since I read A. M. Homes' The Mistress's Daughter last August. His writing style was a little difficult to get into at first, but after a short while the family story is engaging. It was a en enjoyable quick read.
Feb 25, 2013 Isabel marked it as abandoned
So disappointed. Mr. Auchincloss might be considered a living landmark, but I'm not seeing his brilliance. I gave this book more than my 10% deciding point based on his reputation. A book of portraits with no compelling plot or protagonist, flat and lackluster. I had thought I'd be adding a long list of his titles to my to-read list....wrong!
Lauren Albert
May 30, 2010 Lauren Albert rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
Pleasant enough look at the "monied classes" in old New York. There isn't a real "story" per se but rather the story of the family from the perspective of its different members at different time periods.
Shawn Thrasher
Dec 15, 2011 Shawn Thrasher rated it it was ok
Dry and sparse, probably on purpose in some literary way I don't understand. I was disappointed, because I liked Louis Auchincloss's nonfiction. But I just didn't get this one.
Steven Ujifusa
Sep 07, 2012 Steven Ujifusa rated it liked it
Read this on vacation. Many stock characters that already appeared in the much-better written "The Rector of Justin." Many of them seemed incompletely developed or faded into the historical ether.
Mar 31, 2015 Susan rated it liked it
3.5 stars. More a collection of related short stories than an actual novel, but richly detailed writing and pitch-perfect dialogue.
Apr 20, 2008 Amy rated it really liked it
I have read two novels by Louis Auchinloss and thoroughly enjoy them. They typically are about NY society.
Jan 29, 2009 Darlene rated it it was amazing
This is a novel of manners among the very rich who, nevertheless, have their trials and tribulations, as we hear from transgenerational narrators.
Jun 09, 2012 Bobbie rated it liked it
Shelves: 2012
i read this book for book club but it didn't much enjoy it. I thought it was boring and this people need to get real. The only 2 characters i liked were the grandmother and Isabel.
Karen Rodgers
Karen Rodgers rated it really liked it
Aug 23, 2013
Ashleywgr rated it liked it
Dec 21, 2015
Michele E.
Michele E. rated it really liked it
Aug 23, 2016
Liz rated it really liked it
Jun 29, 2016
Jun 18, 2012 Leticia rated it liked it
Great multi-generational story of an elite NYC family.
Cailinmcc rated it really liked it
Sep 01, 2015
Marissa Ovick
Marissa Ovick rated it really liked it
Oct 25, 2016
Maia rated it liked it
Aug 09, 2009
Ninotchka rated it liked it
Aug 02, 2013
Texbritreader rated it liked it
Jan 20, 2010
Cynthia Stead
Cynthia Stead rated it liked it
Jul 29, 2012
Barbara rated it liked it
Dec 28, 2013
Joanne rated it it was ok
Apr 17, 2012
Mark Mills
Mark Mills rated it liked it
May 11, 2009
Eileen rated it it was amazing
Feb 19, 2014
Mom rated it it was amazing
Aug 16, 2008
« previous 1 3 4 5 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Sorensen Library ...: Elite New York 1 1 Jun 20, 2012 12:53PM  
  • Our Crowd: The Great Jewish Families of New York
  • John Singer Sargent
  • The Ladies of Longbourn (The Pemberley Chronicles, #4)
  • Haywire
  • The Lone Pilgrim
  • Rodin's Debutante
  • Cheerful Money: Me, My Family, and the Last Days of Wasp Splendor
  • The World in a City: Traveling the Globe Through the Neighborhoods of the New New York
  • Harvard Yard (Peter Fallon, #2)
  • George, Being George: George Plimpton's Life as Told, Admired, Deplored, and Envied by 200 Friends, Relatives, Lovers, Acquaintances, Rivals--and a Few Unappreciative ...
  • A Curtain Falls (Simon Ziele, #2)
  • Black Gotham: A Family History of African Americans in Nineteenth-Century New York City
  • The World's Banker: A Story of Failed States, Financial Crises, and the Wealth and Poverty of Nation s
  • Before
  • Always Grace
  • God and Man at Yale: The Superstitions of 'Academic Freedom'
  • The Cherokee Removal: A Brief History with Documents
  • Outside Providence
Louis Stanton Auchincloss was an American novelist, historian, and essayist.

Among Auchincloss's best-known books are the multi-generational sagas The House of Five Talents, Portrait in Brownstone, and East Side Story. Other well-known novels include The Rector of Justin, the tale of a renowned headmaster of a school like Groton trying to deal with changing times, and The Embezzler, a look at white
More about Louis Auchincloss...

Share This Book

“I used to go to church. I even went through a rather intense religious period when I was sixteen. But the idea of an everlasting life -- a never-ending banquet, as a stupid visiting minister to our church once appallingly described it -- filled me with a greater terror than the concept of extinction...” 0 likes
“Not the least of the hardships to which the dying are subject is the visitation of their loved ones. The poor darlings, God bless them, may feel every impulse to condole and console, but their primary sensation is nonetheless one of embarrassment in the presence of the unspeakable and a guilty gratitude that it is not yet their fate.” 0 likes
More quotes…