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Hardcover Good as Gold Book

ISBN: 0671229230

ISBN13: 9780671229238

Good as Gold

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Book Overview

Bruce Gold, a middle-aged, Jewish professor of English literature, finds himself on the brink of a golden career in politics -- and not a moment too soon, as Gold yearns for an opportunity to transform a less-than-picture-perfect life: His children think little of him, his intimidating father endlessly bullies him, and his wife is so oblivious that she doesn't even notice he's left her. As funny as it is sad, Good as Gold is a story of children grown...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

Tarnishing Washington

In "Good as Gold", Joseph Heller does for Washington what he did to the military in "Catch-22". As a fan of Heller's other works, I had high expectations for this book. While I thought there were a lot of humorous moments, it is a notch slightly below "Catch-22" and "Something Happened". Welcome to Washington where if something is not working, try the opposite. In Washington, everybody has a job working for the government yet nobody knows what their job is. It makes far less sense than the politics of high school homecoming queen. Enter Bruce Gold. Bruce Gold lives a paradox like the one in Washington. His family lacks respect for him despite his achievements. He is a college professor and author, yet his father respects his high school dropout brother more. When the president likes his writing, Gold seems to be a shoe-in in the president's inner-circle. But first, Gold needs a wife that is not so dumpy. Other extra-marrital affairs might also help his career. Gold has his sights set on the Secretary of State, but he needs more connections and places more stress on his pressured integrity. At this point, Gold wonders if it is all worth the price he is paying. His family still hates him and his soon-to-be second wife is far inferior to the first wife. Is Washington really worth the trouble? There were a lot of aspects of this book that I liked. I do not feel that the story engaged me in the same way some of Heller's books did. The story just seemed to go to long in some areas and lost me. Heller is a very gifted writer and one of my favorites. I would still recommend this book to others. 4 1/2 stars would be a more appropriate rating.

Classic Heller

Joseph Heller is probably the only writer who could always make me laugh out loud. This is a book about a college professor and writer who gets a chance to go to Washington to work for the President. An old friend of his works at the White House and invites him to come to work there, but won't tell him what the job is or when he can start. The friend tells Gold that they want to make a big announcement about the appointment, but want to keep it secret. Everything this guy says is an oxymoron. Meanwhile, his family is driving him crazy. His father and step mother live in Florida during the winters, but come back to New York for the summer. The whole family is anxious for them to go back to Florida, but they keep stalling. Gold's brother makes idiotic comments, constantly badgering him and trying to get him into a fight. Gold is always being put into a position where he can either argue and look like he's showing off, or ignore the comment and be criticized for ignoring the mistake in his brother's comment. If you've enjoyed any of Joseph Heller's other books, this is more of the same, so you should get a kick out of this one too.

Good as gold, indeed.

Good As Gold is Joseph Heller's third masterpiece. Heller, who sadly left us in 1999, was notorious for taking an eternity between books (13 years between his first two.) And, although this may be true, one thing is certain: when Joe Heller delivers a book, it's a guaranteed masterpiece. Every new Heller release is an event. Good As Gold is as good as the best of them. By turns screamingly funny and heart-piercingly true, this is one of the few books that can make you laugh and cry at the same time. The book works simultaneously on multiple levels. It is a fable of "The Jewish Experience" in America; it is a satiric and highly biting look at the hypocrisy and incompetence at work in everyday government affairs; it is a funny and all-too-sad peek into the lives of the typical American extended family (you could also see the entire thing as an attack on Henry Kissinger - indeed, the only complaint I have about the book is that Heller sometimes follows this tangent too far.) The book, as always with Heller, is very cleverly written. There are no numbered chapters: instead, the book is split into a number of different sections, all with a certain title, which also happen to be titles of works being written by the protagonist (who is, among other things, a writer) - in this way, the book plays out the very story and experience it is purporting to have the main character write himself. An essential read from the greatest American author of the second half of the 20th century.

one of the all time funniest books I have ever read.

It so apropos today. Bruce Gold has a job at the White House... to make sure the politicians say absolutely nothing of any importance at all, but sound like they are. This book is biting. Hilarious. I have read all his books and oddly enough while I loved Catch-22, and Something Happened, this one sticks with me. It is all about the Orwellian newspeak which I seem to hear everywhere these days. But done with a wicked sense of humour. Laugh out loud funny. The best political satire I have ever read.

Greatest Book of the 20th Century

While it is undisputed that Heller is our greatest writer, there are some who would rate Catch-22 as his greatest work. Those people better take a second look at this book. The Gold family is unparalleled in our literature. Sid Gold is the perfect parody of Melville's Ishmael. Social commentary in the guise of comedy. While others have tried, only the true master Heller does it justice.
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