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The Three Weissmanns of Westport
"Schine's homage to Jane Austen has it all....A sparkling, crisp, clever,...
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Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

Created: 08/11/11

Replies: 51

Posted Aug. 11, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
admin

Join Date: 10/11/10

Posts: 369

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Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?


Posted Aug. 11, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
annettes

Join Date: 04/15/11

Posts: 9

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I loved this book, especially some of the characters. Mr. Shpuntov and Henry added a light touch and Uncle Lou wanted to solve everyone's problems with a party. The story started quickly with Josie telling Betty he wanted a divorce and then learning how she coped by thinking and talking of him as deceased. Of course you had to dislike Felicity.


Posted Aug. 11, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
sarahd

Join Date: 10/16/10

Posts: 84

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RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I definitely agree. It was great from the start, and Felicity is such a pain. I thought she was a little uni-dimensional, though.


Sarah D
Posted Aug. 11, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
joanw

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 12

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

For some reason I had a hard time staying with this story - when I finally got into it it became better.
I certainly felt sorry for Betty and her divorce from Josie - they all seemed to be lookiing for someone
but didn't know it - Felicity was more than a pain - and I do feel in the end Josie was not going to
stay with her, do you?


Posted Aug. 11, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
sarahd

Join Date: 10/16/10

Posts: 84

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RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I totally got that sense, too, Joan. I think Josie got a huge wake up call when Betty died, which is why he asked Felicity to stay home from the funeral. I think that decision was the beginning of the end for that relationship, which pleased me to know end. Felicity needed a comeuppance!


Sarah D
Posted Aug. 11, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
rebajane

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 138

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RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I loved, loved, loved this book. I love books with quirky characters and I really got a huge kick out of Miranda and Annie's relationship having 3 quirky sisters myself. I believe that Felicity was one dimensional on purpose. I don't think we were meant to like her


Posted Aug. 12, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
jeannec

Join Date: 07/20/11

Posts: 3

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I loved the quirky humor and the well-drawn characters, although I would have ended the book differently. I thought the upbeat style called for a more upbeat ending.


Posted Aug. 12, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
dave s

Join Date: 05/19/11

Posts: 20

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I have to admit that I did not enjoy this; while the story had a lot of potential, I felt I never really got to know the characters. I also found much of the dialogue rather simplistic. That being said, there were several moments where the commentary on the emotional rollercoaster the three main characters were going through because of the separation was poignant. I just wish there were more of those moments


Posted Aug. 12, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
rebajane

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 138

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RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

Dave, do think that some of what you felt was because it was a story about sisters? I sometimes get that when I read novels that are more focused on male relationships. I feel like I am missing something


Posted Aug. 12, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
annettes

Join Date: 04/15/11

Posts: 9

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

Good thought rebajane in your response to dave s. I did not have brothers and all my cousins were/are female, so I often do not relate to a story that features male relationships.


Posted Aug. 12, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
gwendolyndawson

Join Date: 10/20/10

Posts: 63

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RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I loved the novel and found it to be more complex than I was expecting. The beginning and end especially held my interest, though I found the Palm Springs section to be a bit slower than the rest. I, took, loved the humor.


Posted Aug. 13, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
debracoley

Join Date: 08/11/11

Posts: 69

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RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

This was a novel that I just didn't believe would hold my interest; I saw it as another "chick lit" beach
book. I admit I was in error. It was well written, and the characters developed in an unique manner. Sans Felicity, each major character held promise and matured into someone I could like and enjoy. I didn't care for Annie and Miranda at first, but by novels end, I felt as though their futures would be happier because of all they experienced: loss of the security found in love, money, and a mother. My feelings for Betty increased as she slowly revealed her past with Josie. By novels end, I believe that Josie, too, came back around to the man who held Betty's heart for all those years, which may give credence to Josie's idea that " in the end it all works out."


Posted Aug. 14, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
maxined

Join Date: 08/14/11

Posts: 6

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

Being a 'woman of a certain age' I immediately bonded with Betty. but was a bit disappointed to find that her character was downplayed throughout the book. In the end , however, she emerged as the focal poiint.
I enjoyed the storyline and the intereaction of the characters. Tracing their growth or lack of it was well done.


Posted Aug. 14, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
carolyna

Join Date: 08/14/11

Posts: 26

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I never quite got into the story, because I never really cared about any of the characters that much. I did read the book from cover to cover but never got the essence of Sense and Senibility in a Manhattan setting. Daughter Annie was the only character who paid attention to what was happening in their lives and was the only one who understood how to bring balance and order to their lives. There were too many "irresponsible" people in one story for me!
Thank goodness for Cousin Lou who could financially come to their rescue, periodically.


Posted Aug. 14, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
maxined

Join Date: 08/14/11

Posts: 6

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I agree...It didn't seem to me that the characters other than Annie grasped the situation and certainly were no help in the practical planning of what should be done. They didn't seem capable of facing facts.


Posted Aug. 16, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
dlpiano

Join Date: 08/14/11

Posts: 15

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I enjoyed the novel and found myself staying up late to finish it. This surprised me because in the beginning I was confused with who was who, and who was or wasn't doing what!


Posted Aug. 16, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
audreg

Join Date: 07/16/11

Posts: 5

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I agree with carolyna. I didn't care enough about the characters but did finish the book hoping to find more to like. They all seemed to think the perfect "someone" would make them happy. In today's world women aren't dependent on men for money and should take responsibility for their own lives and happiness, as should men.


Posted Aug. 17, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
debrav

Join Date: 08/16/11

Posts: 10

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I thought it was a "cut above" the average beach read, but agree with Carolyna and Audreg that the story lacked a truly sympathetic or really interesting character. It was not a book that I'll remember in a few weeks!


Posted Aug. 17, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
theresej

Join Date: 05/28/11

Posts: 5

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

My thoughts were channelled by "carolyna" a little while ago: I never got into the story, and found Annie to be the only character with a sense of intelligent observation. I did not really care what happened to the characters, who never drew me into their lives. Yes, "there were too many 'irresponsible' people in one story", and Uncle Lou was not enough to save the story for me.


Posted Aug. 17, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
odwazny

Join Date: 08/17/11

Posts: 2

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

This is not a book I would read again, it was an effort for me to finish it. I was meant to dislike Felicity from the beginning and I did. She was a spectacular manipulator in the beginning. I liked each of the women, however never got the Austin connection. I thought each female character was rather predictable and the male characters under developed with the exception of Uncle Lou.


Posted Aug. 17, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
carolyna

Join Date: 08/14/11

Posts: 26

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

Oh my, when I wrote my first impressions I was trying to soften my opinion because I felt there was not much of any "redeeming value" to this story and others were saying how much they liked the book! . I agree with theresej about not caring what happened to the characters. Austin's characters fit well with the stereotype ideas we have of Victorian women but I don't think any of Cathleen's characters came close. I agree with someone who said it was too bad the book identified with Sense and Sensibility.


Posted Aug. 17, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
kareng

Join Date: 08/17/11

Posts: 4

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

Increasingly, as I read the book, I enjoyed it. I came to love Betty and liked how she viewed herself as a widow. It showed she had a sense of humor. I also liked how wise she was about her daughters. Both Annie and Miranda drove me a tad nuts for while and I wanted to send them to Al-Anon for their codependency, especially Annie, but as circumstances and characters were developed, I recalled my own sisters relationships and realized how they are truly intertwined. I despised Amber and Kit but who didn't?


Posted Aug. 18, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
Wendy

Join Date: 07/17/11

Posts: 8

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

The New York Times put out such a glowing review that people rushed out to get the book. I've found among friends that read it that there is a great disparity. Some LOVED it and some barely tolerated it. While a lot of books certainly create the dichotomy, I was rather surprised by my group of friends. We're fairly "similar" readers. The fact the she took on a Jane Austen work was impressive, but I think readers' prior knowledge of Sense and Sensibility either predisposes people to either enjoy or not enjoy this book. I tended to forgive certain things because I love J.A. and S&S. Had she tried similar things with a Pride and Prejudice rewrite, my favorite of J.A. works, I doubt I would have been as forgiving. I hope this makes sense!


Posted Aug. 18, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
debrav

Join Date: 08/16/11

Posts: 10

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I actually liked Amber and Kit because through them other characters get what they deserve!!!!!


Posted Aug. 18, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
sandrah

Join Date: 07/18/11

Posts: 49

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

It took me quite a while to get into this book. I blamed that on being a midwestener and my cateract surgery (Aug. 3 and Aug. 17). But today I read from the middle to the end in one sitting and really enjoyed the characters. They became "real" to me: Miranda and Annie quit moaning and feeling sorry for themselves and Betty seemed to be settling in, resigned but no longer angry about her fate. They became people I could care for instead of characters on a page.
I can see the idea of "sense" and "sensibility" as the three women came out of their inward view and reentered the world. But truthfully, if no one had mentioned the Jane Austin connection, I probably wouldn't have picked up on it.


"The reader lives a 1000 lives before he dies. The [person] who never reads lives only one."
George R.R. Martin.
Posted Aug. 18, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
andreas

Join Date: 06/16/11

Posts: 5

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I was interested enough in it to finish it, and got interested enough in it to read the last half in two days, but I never felt all that connected to the characters. Some of the things that happened at the end seemed to come out of nowhere, such at Miranda's relationship with Leanne. I did find some echoes of Austen in the book, especially the genteel family forced into respectable poverty and depending on a relative to help them along. I think a book club would find some things to talk about. I did not particularly enjoy the author's style of writing, tho I did get comfortable with it by mid book.


Posted Aug. 19, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
maxined

Join Date: 08/14/11

Posts: 6

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I agree with Andreas...the ending was a jolt to me, and was the reason I did not recommend it as a discussion book for my book club. I had chosen the book early on, but changed my mind. In retrospect, I found the writing 'jerky' in spots and although I bonded with Betty the other characters never did really come alive for me.


Posted Aug. 19, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
christinek

Join Date: 04/17/11

Posts: 5

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

This is a book that I kept waiting for the characters to develop. They did have characteristics but they seemed so unfocused. I finished the book because I was hoping for some solution that showed any amount of determination. I am not discounting Anne, she was the only one that was aware of their financial crisis. I liked Uncle Lou and his enthusiasm and willingness to help---the character of Roberts, who actually saved the family, was left a small character. I would not recommend this book.


Posted Aug. 19, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
marshas

Join Date: 07/09/11

Posts: 7

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I loved the book and couldn't stop reading it. I found the characters funny, interesting, and infuriating, by turns, and their interaction and growth throughout the story was engaging. I liked the way Betty started out seeming totally out-of-touch and a bit addled, then coming through and sticking it to her faithless husband in the end!


Posted Aug. 19, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
dave s

Join Date: 05/19/11

Posts: 20

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I agree with Andreas--I never felt like I really got to know the characters. The story could have been so much richer -- a missed opportunity


Posted Aug. 20, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
susanr

Join Date: 04/14/11

Posts: 84

Expert

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I really wanted to like it but could only read about 100 pages before I realized that I didn't like the main characters and didn't really care what happened in their lives. I read a lot of great reviews of this book and I really tried to read it but just couldn't.


Posted Aug. 20, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
maxined

Join Date: 08/14/11

Posts: 6

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

Dave s..I had somewhat the same reaction after reading glowing revues. Read in this morning's NYTimes that publishers are paying people (who are making a living doing this!) so much per good revue. So much for impartial revues!! Now, who do we believe?


Posted Aug. 23, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
trezelineb

Join Date: 04/24/11

Posts: 16

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I agree with those of you who were disappointed by this book. It seemed too predictable once the characters were introduced and described throughout the first chapters. The story just didn't do it for me and I had to force myself to finish the story.


Posted Aug. 24, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
neilw

Join Date: 07/27/11

Posts: 2

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I did not care for the book. I thought it was too slow moving and the "plot" was shallow.


Posted Aug. 25, 2011 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
Jan Mays

Join Date: 07/16/11

Posts: 8

RE: Overall, what did you think of The Three Weissmanns of Westport?

I was very disappointed in this book. There just wasn't much of a story to it. The characters seemed to wallow along in their own little worlds. I really wanted to like this book, and there were a few redeeming paragraphs, but generally, a waste of reading time. I'm sure Ms. Shine and her editors put a lot of effort into it, and hopefully they can use it as a learning tool for a better story next time.


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