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The Betsy (The Betsy)

3.46  ·  Rating details ·  1,540 Ratings  ·  51 Reviews
They were two men bound together by their daring, their vision—and their erotic power over women.

Racecar driver Angelo Perino rose from an immigrant family to a life on the razor’s edge, where fast cars and faster women were his for the taking. Loren Hardeman is the titular head of a giant automotive empire—and of a family sliding into decadence, adultery, and destruction
Mass Market Paperback, 374 pages
Published April 15th 2002 by Blake Publishing (first published January 1st 1971)
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Kurt Reichenbaugh
Apr 13, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: hairy-eyeball
Going through some Harold Robbins books I got from a library sale. This one was written when Robbins still seemed to give a damn about writing novels, but you can tell he got tired of it before finishing it. The sexy stuff was pretty graphic for its time and its popularity. Think of teenagers with a ton of money and no repercussions (didn't someone once say Hollywood is like that?) and you got an idea what motivates many of the characters. The main plot is about a family that makes cars, and how ...more
This is one of the funniest books I have ever read in my life. Unintended by the writer. The story is of the rise to power of an auto company and the family of the founder. The real humor begins in the "modern era" sections of the tale. 1971, when this was written...

The mighty American car companies are dying at the hands of small Japanese imports, the VW bug, and etc. The high stakes race to build an american sub-compact is on. Ford has the Pinto, there's the Gremlin, and the Chevy Vega. This
VijayaRaghavan S N
Feb 09, 2016 rated it did not like it
Beware everyone.. this review is given an A Certificate by myself.. So those who are not comfortable with swearing please skip this review and for your own good, the book too..

Harold Robins, you sex deprived, pervert, sick minded, fucking asshole... books are not something for you to show the readers your sexual fantasies.. If you want to display your sick headed fantasies go and make a porno or write a blog where shit like these gets publicised...

Had I lived in your times, I swear on myself th
Mandi Martin
Sep 05, 2011 rated it liked it
I picked this up at a thrift store for 50 cents. I couldn't pass up the title. It turned out to be an easy read. not too gripping, but not boring. It gave an interesting insight into the complexity of the car manufacturing world which is something I knew nothing about. The brutal business dealings and plots were sort of fun. This was another book where the author felt the need to have their male lead sleep with everything that moves. Which wasn't really related to the plot too much. I just don't ...more
Apr 08, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Imagine a world where women say only what men want to hear, where they work to fulfill a man’s every whim, and where they reach their, um…sexual satisfaction with the ease of turning on a light switch–this is the world Harold Robbins created in The Betsy. If the female-marketed Harlequin romances have a counterpart in the male market, that counterpart is Harold Robbins. Let me make it clear from the start: This is not a good novel; in fact, it is one of the worst novels I’ve ever read. It took m ...more
Aug 26, 2014 added it
Shelves: younger-me
Apparently this is the day I trawl Goodreads for all the books I illicitly read when I was way too young for them! This is not a book I should have read at the age of 12, but it definitely happened.
Sep 02, 2012 rated it really liked it
One of my all time favorite novel. Read it for 3 times.
Oct 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
Sexy adventurous and way ahead of its time.
Aug 25, 2015 rated it really liked it
Holy smokes! bought this one in front of a posh bookstore in Roppongi to nurse my pulp addiction. 200 yen, and worth every one! A pulpster's response to women's lib, set in the world of race cars and Detroit boardrooms, with people who don't like Detroit very much and presage white flight with every breath. Told by a tarnished angel corporate alpha guy, who gave up a career racing (and also lost his face, as we read in the opening scene in a Swiss hospital!) to sublimate his love of cars into a ...more
Debi Cates
I have no idea how, but in 1972 at the awkward age of 12 going on 30, I got a hold of this book, with its campy 70s titillating cover and proceeded to take it with me on my first commercial airplane trip (which also happened to be a solo one). I don't remember the contents of the book, in spite of what had to have been such a personal coup into the secret adult world, but I do distinctly remember the alarmed expressions of a couple of grownups on the plane.

Recalling this made me laugh today. I w
M.L. Bushman
May 02, 2009 rated it really liked it
If you'd like a look inside the auto industry as it was at the time Harold Robbins wrote The Betsy, this is the book for you. Corporate politics, sex, violence, and intrigue surround the creation of a new car, the main character, Angelo Perino, calls The Betsy.

Several twists in plot, seemingly out of the blue, catch you at the end of this entertaining story. All the loose ends are neatly wrapped up. All-in-all, for dedicated Harold Robbins' fans, this is a must-read.
Oct 09, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Those who like their depictions of sex graphic--even fetishistic.
Mr. Robbins novels are not for the faint of heart...they always contain frank discussions of sex and drugs, and often cross over into descriptions of same. Frequently--as in this novel--the sex is fetishistic in nature (one of the first scenes of this book involves a woman who drinks her lovers' urine, while he voids his bladder). Still, it was entertaining, and the storytelling is very compelling. Read it...if you dare.
Mar 29, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Gründe für das Buch:
- spannende Familiengeschichte mit Autoentwicklung
- unterschiedliche Perspektiven aus unterschiedlichen Jahrzehnten
- sehr flüssig zu lesen
Gründe gegen das Buch:
- Manchmal durch die gleichen Namen Verwechselung
- letzter Teil nur in der Ich-Sicht
- Was ist nun mit dem Auto?
Aug 29, 2007 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: for all
I love the boldness in Harold Robbins novels. Though the leads have grey shades but we still fall in love with them. THis one is about a complicated rich family who manufacture cars..the family is seriously complicated
Apr 29, 2012 rated it liked it
My grandmother that passed earlier this year used to read a lot. Harold Robbins was one of the authors she used to read I actually read this book and many others of his when I was a teenager can you actual believe it.
Jun 05, 2014 rated it really liked it
I remember family members reading this when I was a child. Great insight into the auto industry. Character development was also great. A good insight into the thinking of the wealthy toward the working poor. Detailed sex wasn't need. Overall a good read.
Peter Ackerman
Dec 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
One of Robbins' best, in my opinion.
the gift
have I actually read this since I hit 17? who knows. does it have an actual plot? who knows. do I remember it? only parts.
May 04, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: raunchy
I rather like it as a graphic description of how a man cuckolded his own son and impregnated his daughter-in-law.

Trashy but very gripping.
Jul 10, 2008 rated it it was ok
liked the movie better, or maybe it was Kathleen Beller...
Dawn Wells
Mar 05, 2013 rated it it was ok
Re-read. I originally read this years ago and found the look at the auto industry fascinating. Now, reading it after all the bail outs it's not so interesting.
Therese B
Mar 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I haven't read Harold Robbins in years. I enjoyed his first books but as time went on, he got a little much sex and drugs but the plots were always good.
Louisa Mcginn
Nov 11, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The original bonk-buster, OTT and ridiculous, but awesome nonetheless
Ferda Ak
Aug 19, 2012 rated it did not like it
The worstt of Harrold Robbins
Nov 22, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
Harold Robbins had by this time become one of my favorite fiction authors.
Dharini Mistry
Too old to read now, read as a teenager.
Jan 15, 2012 marked it as not_read_only_released  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to BoekenTrol by: Moem
From one of the book boxes that Moem sent to me. Will not read it, only release as soon as there's someone requesting it.
May 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Rupesh Goenka
Sep 25, 2012 rated it it was ok
A book about ambition, power, passion & destruction..
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Born as Harold Rubin in New York City, he later claimed to be a Jewish orphan who had been raised in a Catholic boys home. In reality he was the son of well-educated Russian and Polish immigrants. He was reared by his pharmacist father and stepmother in Brooklyn.

His first book, Never Love a Stranger (1948), caused controversy with its graphic sexuality. Publisher Pat Knopf reportedly bought Never
More about Harold Robbins...

Other Books in the Series

The Betsy (2 books)
  • The Stallion

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“I think I’ll be moving on tomorrow,” she said. “What for? Got anything better to do?” She shook her head. “No. But this isn’t my bag. You know that. These cars don’t make any noise.” “Someday all cars won’t make noise,” he said.” 0 likes
“When I wrote The Betsy, I spent a lot of time in Detroit with the Ford family. The old man running the place had supplied me with Fords, a Mustang, that station wagon we still have…. After he read the book and I was flying home from New York the day after it was published, he made a phone call to the office on Sunset and asked for all the cars to be returned. I guess he didn’t like the book.” 0 likes
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