Denise's Reviews > This Beautiful Life

This Beautiful Life by Helen Schulman
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's review
Jan 02, 12

did not like it

This Beautiful Life tells the story of the Bergamots, new to New York City and trying to find their place in this wealthy, no-holds-barred lifestyle. Just when it looks like Richard, Liz, 15 yr old Jake and their adopted, 6-yr-old daughter Coco have adapted to this strange new world, Jake receives a sexually explicit email from a young admirer and forwards it to a friend. The video astonishingly quickly goes viral and soon the whole school has seen it. The Bergamots struggle to deal with the repercussions as their new friends alternately despise and pity them.

I had a really hard time relating to this book. It was never very clear to me why such a relatively small incident could so derail such a strong and close family. Their reactions made them seem overly sensitive and unable to recover from minor mistakes. How could the parents have gotten so far in life with such weak self-confidence and no way to recover from mishaps? Their response to the email snafu destroys their son and their relationship. Watching a disaster like this unfold is just painful, not my idea of an entertaining or even instructive read!

I listened to the audio version of This Beautiful Life narrated by Hilary Huber. Maybe with a better story I would have liked her reading but here I just found it bland and forgettable.

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