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Pride and Avarice: A Novel
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Pride and Avarice: A Novel

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  148 Ratings  ·  34 Reviews
Hailed by The New Yorker as "wickedly enjoyable," Nicholas Coleridge's newest novel is a sharp comedy of manners about two powerful men engaged in a bitter rivalry. Their feud rages from the boardroom to the bedroom as old money takes on the new

Gazing from his magnificent Chawbury Manor, Miles Straker has it all. But when noveau riche Ross Clegg buys and builds on the lan
Hardcover, 490 pages
Published February 2nd 2010 by Thomas Dunne Books (first published 2010)
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Feb 18, 2017 rated it did not like it
This was a dud for me - DNF @ 44%.

Given the cutesy cover and silly description, I didn't expect this book to be so dark. I'm no psychologist, but I'm pretty sure the main character, Miles Straker, is a sociopath. His evil rapist son is perhaps even worse. It is was scary to think that the author could very well have based them on real people - as connected as he is, he's definitely met his share of rich assholes.

I don't really know what the author was aiming for with the story, it is so meanderi
Mar 01, 2010 rated it really liked it
Literary critics have buzzwords. I've seen many books described as a "delightful romp" but never really related to it. Until now. There is really no other way to describe this book. It's the best time I've had reading in a long while! Just fun, fun, fun. This is the story of a greedy bon vivant and his family as well as the family of a nouveau riche chain grocer who has had the nerve to buy adjacent property to build a home that the main character, Miles, finds an offensive eyesore that obstruct ...more
Jan 01, 2014 rated it liked it
The experience is not unlike a having a "guilty pleasure". The plot and characters draw you into the world created by Mr. Coleridge and one is compelled to see the story through. A lot of typos in this first version, though, that will hopefully be corrected in future editions.
Jun 29, 2015 rated it liked it
If you want a juicy morality play about an evil sociopathic wealthy British businessman - satisfying.
Jill Meyer
Feb 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
Not quite as good as but a very good read, all the same. Nicholas Coleridge is a British writer who has been "discovered" in the US. This novel, "Pride and Avarice" was published in the UK last year under the title "Deadly Sins". I've read all three of his previous novels, and have found them to be very good takes at the British social mores. I reviewed "A Much Married Man", giving it five stars.

"Pride and Avarice" is good, not great, story of two men - both wealthy - at great odds with each oth
Naomi Kelsey
Jul 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
As always, a frothy, sharp, and funny delight.

Coleridge has only written one book that I would grade less than an A+ ("The Fashion Conspiracy", non fiction bitchery about the fashion industry). His grasp of the minutia of upper class mores, manners, and misbehavior is flawless.

If you like Julian Fellowes, Evelyn Waugh, Edith Wharton, and/or Candace Bushnell, you'll LOVE relatively undiscovered gem Nicholas Coleridge. The characters tend towards stereotypes, and the plots can be a bit thin or r
Letitia Todd Kim
Mar 21, 2017 rated it liked it
Entertaining and humorous read about a rich bastard who repeatedly tries to sabotage an unsuspecting parvenu, but is foiled at every turn by rotten luck. A bit heavy on the stereotypes, but overall highly enjoyable.
Kate Sheehan
Apr 09, 2010 rated it liked it
On balance, I would say I liked this book. As an Anglophile, it's hard for me not to like something British and this was so interesting in terms of the contemporary world of business in England. But what made me not "love" it or give it more stars was that I felt like it really needed editing. It reminded me of a soap opera, not in the sense of lots of over-the-top drama, but because things just keep happening without, apparently, making a point. I get that the connective thread is that it's the ...more
Luna Shen
Jan 15, 2014 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
MB (What she read)
Dec 17, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, read-in-2010
Miles was so incredibly evil that I kept wanting to squash him like a bug! I glommed the whole book in suspended animation waiting for him to get his punishment. Needless to say, the end was very satisfying!

I found most of the female characters rather insipid and passive. This is a familiar characteristic to me from reading British authors. I'm not sure whether this is an actual cultural difference, or whether it is a weird preclusion/preference of my own to prefer more of a 'get up, get busy, t
Sep 02, 2013 rated it really liked it
This is what reviewers back in the day would have called a good old-fashioned romp through the world of the rich and famous in contemporary Britain: social climbers, coke snorters, captains of industry, doubledealing PR wizards. Author Nicholas Coleridge skewers pretty much everyone in his story except those who are trying to do some actual good (not just some good for themselves), and even they come in for some gentle jibes. He has a good eye for the hierarchy: those who made their money 20 yea ...more
Jul 31, 2010 rated it liked it
Miles Straker has it all: a successful PR business, a dutiful wife & family, and a charming country manor. Chawbury Manor, that is. What could possibly ruin his happiness?

Enter Ross Clegg, another successful entrepreneur and self-made millionaire. Moreover, Clegg is building a new home right by Chawbury Manor. And, yes, Chawbury Park is bigger and grander than Chawbury Manor.

What begins as petty jealousy turns into an all-out war between the families. As the novel progresses, members of the
May 20, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2010
Miles Straker is a well to do man with everything going for him - society wife, town house in London, lovely children, successful PR business, gorgeous mistress and a fabulous country manor - he is a man who is used to getting what he wants and is somewhat ruthless about it. But it all starts to go horribly wrong when self made millionair Ross Clegg builds a modern monstrosity of a house right at the end of Miles' valley spoiling his once pristine view. What Miles does to take revenge will make ...more
Apr 09, 2013 rated it liked it
I read this Coleridge novel after reading his "Much Married Man" while on vacation. It was very much the same novel with different characters, but an enjoyable soap opera beach read. It could have been much tightened up and made about 100 pages shorter, but all-in-all it was an ok read.

It is always fun when the evil man gets his come uppence in the end, while the "man in white" wins!
Mary Kay
Oct 16, 2010 rated it liked it
This is really a 3.75. Two self-made rich guys in an upper class part of England try to outdo each other. Their wives & children,friends & acquaintances all end up embroiled in the controversies over the years. Great stuff!
Jul 07, 2015 rated it liked it
OK, pretty entertaining book about one man's obsessive hatred of his neighbor and the ways in which that obsession costs him far more than he realizes. Liked the British setting. Good for light summer reading.
May 17, 2011 rated it liked it
There is a lot of stuff in here I wouldn't recommend to my friends (language, crudeness, etc.) but it was definitely interesting! The characters were so stupid and shallow, it was kind of like watching a train wreck...
Mar 11, 2010 rated it it was ok
About one third of the way into the novel I realized exactly where it was going and I decided to just skip ahead to the last chapter to prove myself right. The whole thing reads like Candace Bushnell for men.
Thomas Hughes
Jun 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Really fabulous read. Nicholas has tremendous insight into human nature. Because of this he creates such rich characters, interactions and scenes.
Feb 06, 2011 rated it really liked it
Totally enjoyable. I didn't know where this was going till the last part of the book. Could not put it down. You just loved to hate Miles.
Hot Cup O'Monkey
May 01, 2012 rated it liked it
An entertaining page-turner; fun and satisfying.
Mar 19, 2010 rated it it was ok
It was slow getting into this book because all of the characters were so unsympathetic. However, towards the end, I was pretty hooked and wanted to know what happened to everyone.
Mar 27, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
What to read while waiting for the next Jilly Cooper.
Dec 17, 2013 rated it really liked it
I really liked the plot. Although somewhat predictable, it kept my interest going. This is my first Coleridge novel; it won't be the last.
Mary Liebetrau
Feb 22, 2010 rated it liked it
Very entertaining. This novel would make a great movie. I love to picture the final scene. It's just like my Mom always said, "Greed is the demise of the human race."
Aug 14, 2012 rated it did not like it
Very rarely do I quit on a book but this was one where I did. After 200 pages of feeling like the plot was dragging and disliking all of the characters I finally gave up on it.
Katie Clark
Apr 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Hilarious. This is a five hundred page beach book. It's a total soap opera and I
inhaled it over 2 days.
Janet Stevens
Sep 18, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nice fun tale!! Loads of melodrama and twists and turns!!
Tracey Joseph
Jun 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book...
Jun 08, 2011 rated it it was ok
Not the best. It was basically about a rich family that in the end splits due to the father's jealousy and competition with a new neighbor. Plot wasn't very good...
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Nicholas David Coleridge CBE is the Managing Director of the magazine publishing house Condé Nast in Britain. He was awarded the 1982 prize for British Press Awards Young Journalist of the Year when he was a columnist at the Evening Standard, and the Mark Boxer Lifetime Achievement Award for magazine journalism by the British Society of Magazine Editors in 2001.

He has written twelve books, both f