12 January, 2012

The Duchess Reads. . .

The Duchess reads lots of books and magazines, and while she restrains herself from going all the way pulp, she does have a serious penchant for the glamorous intrigues of the late Dominick Dunne.  Over the holidays a healthy bout of insomnia helped her finish the divine People Like Us, a gossipy story about the endless battle between old and new money, and about the pitfalls that accompany "too much money."  (Back home they call that having more money than sense.)  The Duchess wouldn't be revealing too much by letting her readers know that one of the main characters of People Like Us is a financier who dips his little fat fingers in the insider trading pie.  The Duchess, at least, found it intriguing that the players in People Like Us (published over two decades ago, in 1989) fall prey to the same temptations that plague us today (Bernie Madoff and Raj Rajaratnam are but two recent examples). 

The Duchess got her copy at the terrific Children Charities Resale Store on Barrington.  It's a first edition, signed by Nick Dunne, and as a bookmark it still had the invitation for a party in honor of the books' publication, held at the now-closed Chasen's

Mr. Dunne didn't just write glitzy novels, of course.  He also covered celebrity criminal trials and followed the comings and goings of the overprivileged in society.  To do that one naturally must live among them, which he did until his death in 2009.  He kept a pied-a-terre at 155 E. 49th Street in New York (just a stone's throw from Mama Mexico!), a one bedroom with a wraparound terrace.  Not too shabby. 

Apartment photos from Luxist.

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