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An Object of Beauty Audiobook

An Object of Beauty: A Novel

Lacey Yeager is young, captivating, and ambitious enough to take the New York art world by storm. Groomed at Sotheby's and hungry to keep climbing the social and career ladders put before her, Lacey charms men and women, old and young, rich and even richer with her magnetic charisma and liveliness. Her ascension to the highest tiers of the city parallel the soaring heights - and, at times, the dark lows - of the art world and the country from the late 1990s through today.
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Audible Editor Reviews

Fans of Steve Martin might at first be disappointed when they note that the talented actor, writer, and musician doesn’t narrate his latest work himself. But once they hear Campbell Scott’s voice, their minor distress will be assuaged. Whether by nature or by practice, Scott’s voice is a near replica of Martin’s — a baritone with a slightly nasal quality that rarely rises or falls in pitch, but still inexplicably conveys incredible depths of emotion.

An Object of Beauty thoroughly entrenches readers in the subculture of the Manhattan art world by following Lacey Yeager, a young, morally ambiguous art dealer who will do anything to make her mark — and make her millions — in the fine art business. Narrator Daniel Franks is an aspiring art writer and friend and witness to Lacey’s life — and accidental co-conspirator to a misdeed that could ruin both their careers. Yet, like most people in Lacey’s life, Franks is drawn into her web willingly, due to her uncanny ability to beguile men, from wealthy art collectors to FBI agents — a skill that aids her speedy ascension in her career.

Thanks to Scott’s pitch-perfect performance, Martin’s presence is felt — and not missed — throughout the reading. The subtle humor is sharp and the plot is driven forward by the desire to uncover where the boundaries of Lacey’s integrity lie — if there are any. Part mystery, part intriguing character study, Martin’s latest creates a dilemma for the listener — you don’t like the protagonist, yet you can’t help but want to know more about her and the sometimes seedy world in which she dwells. —Colleen Oakley

Publisher's Summary

Lacey Yeager is young, captivating, and ambitious enough to take the New York art world by storm. Groomed at Sotheby's and hungry to keep climbing the social and career ladders put before her, Lacey charms men and women, old and young, rich and even richer with her magnetic charisma and liveliness. Her ascension to the highest tiers of the city parallel the soaring heights - and, at times, the dark lows - of the art world and the country from the late 1990s through today.

©2010 Steve Martin (P)2010 Hachette

What the Critics Say

"Martin compresses the wild and crazy end of the millennium and finds in this piercing novel a sardonic morality tale." (Publishers Weekly)

"[A] clever, convincingly detailed depiction of NYC’s art scene." (Booklist)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (779 )
5 star
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4 star
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Overall
3.9 (412 )
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1 star
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Story
4.1 (405 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Stephanie Clearlake, CA, United States 11-26-12
    Stephanie Clearlake, CA, United States 11-26-12 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    50
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    "A Look Into the Art World"

    I really liked this book. The characters, dialogue and story rang true and I found it all compelling enough that my mind didn't wander while I was listening. I think some people might find it a little slow or lacking in drama and/or thrills. I enjoyed the quality writing and glimpse inside the business of art.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Melinda Lakewood, CA, United States 12-09-11
    Melinda Lakewood, CA, United States 12-09-11 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
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    42
    2
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    "I love this book & and I love the narration"

    I loved Lacie Yager.
    I love Campbell Sott.
    I love Steve Martin.

    I have listened to this book several times.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    K. Talbott San Jose, CA, United States 06-17-11
    K. Talbott San Jose, CA, United States 06-17-11 Member Since 2015

    kroset

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Need pictures for audible users!"

    I enjoyed the book very much, however was dismayed to discover upon finding a hardcopy at a friends home that there were pictures that weren't available for audio users.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carri Austin, TX, United States 12-22-10
    Carri Austin, TX, United States 12-22-10 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
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    "For the art educated..."

    It may be that one needs to be more educated in the art business to fully appreciate the nuances, but the story and characters are not deeply enough developed for me. However, if you are looking for a quick listen and love Manhattan it holds its own!

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sarah Nelson Austin, TX 01-18-16
    Sarah Nelson Austin, TX 01-18-16 Member Since 2015

    Put your books into my ears!!!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I wanted to like this more than I did"

    I love Steve Martin. His sense of humor is right up my alley. That's why I was so excited when I found out that he also writes novels. I picked up this novel with high expectations of something witty and profound, however I feel disappointed.

    This was somehow written beautifully, yet somehow it still fell squarely into the shallow end of the pool. The main character, Lacey, was too perfect. And without trying to be offensive to someone that I have a lot of respect for, she was almost created in the mind of a young, inexperienced guy. She is beautiful, sexy, slutty, sexually enlightened, witty, smart, and successful. She is the perfect woman and has zero flaws, which makes for a boring story.

    And interesting story about the mundane is created by the impact of the events on a flawed character. The change that character goes through and the tangible evolution spurred on by the events surrounding them. If the character starts perfect and ends perfect, then you simply have plain events being told you plainly.

    After listening to this book I am under the impression that Martin (and the narrator) may have been highly influenced by American Psycho, but too timid to really stretch the boundaries of good and evil.

    All in all, the book wasn't bad... it just wasn't great. And I wouldn't find myself suggesting it to many people. There were some parts that were enlightening and the art knowledge is interesting. But it wasn't enough.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dean R Millson 02-05-15
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    1
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    Performance
    Story
    "Amazed at the turnaround."

    One third through this book I almost decided I didn't want to push any further. I didn't like Lacey and I wasn't sure where it was going. So glad I persisted as it is a wonderful story with the perfect mixture of real events and fictional ones. An intriguing commentary on the art world.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    A. Navar BENSENVILLE, IL, US 10-26-12
    A. Navar BENSENVILLE, IL, US 10-26-12 Member Since 2006

    Ravantra

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Modern Art world history"
    Where does An Object of Beauty rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I rank it in the upper third of all books I've listened to.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Lacey. Because she was a manipulative scoundrel. Interesting character.


    Have you listened to any of Campbell Scott’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    There was not.


    Any additional comments?

    I enjoy Steve Martins books, he is a talented writer.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elaine FAYETTEVILLE, GA, United States 10-06-12
    Elaine FAYETTEVILLE, GA, United States 10-06-12 Member Since 2011
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    Performance
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    "Interesting but not engaging"

    If you are expecting an exciting tale about a likable protagonists' triumph in the challenging art world amidst lush descriptions of New York City, this book will probably disappoint you. That is the kind of book I was imagining when I read the publisher's description, but that's not really the kind of book An Object of Beauty turned out to be. It is more of a book about a morally ambiguous, conniving, and somewhat unfeeling woman's various highs and lows throughout a career in the art world. Found in the book are detailed descriptions of various works of art, museums, and art world business dealings which undoubtedly showcase Steve Martin's knowledge, but all of these details are more informational and instructive in nature; they don't quite fit in with the character-study aspect that the novel otherwise has.

    The narration by Campbell Scott is very good and fits the feel of the book very well. The narrator character in the novel, Nick, is a bit flat and is really only a vessel through which to tell Lacey's story. Campbell Scott is the perfect choice, because like Nick, his performance is droll and dry, and very seemingly removed from the action at hand.

    Overall, this book was good and was not a waste of my time, but it did not meet my expectations.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kimberly Santa Rosa Beach, FL, United States 09-26-12
    Kimberly Santa Rosa Beach, FL, United States 09-26-12 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
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    "Read this book if you are fascinated by NYC/Art"

    This book is not for everyone. Do not read this book because you love Steve Martin. He's not in the book. His comedy is not in the book. No character in the book is based on him. The characters are compelling and the story is a fascinating, nicely-paced tribute to NYC folklore, with just enough truth to make it believable. If you are a genuine Art snob, you may find the name dropping and background information tedious -- but if you are a curious person who has either lived in New York or likes (maybe not loves) Art, you will enjoy this book. I put off reading this book for a long time - somewhat deterred by the reviews - but I am sorry I did. I thoroughly enjoyed this read and am continually impressed by the wide range of Steve Martin's talents.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mynna Huntington Beach 07-11-12
    Mynna Huntington Beach 07-11-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
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    "Steve Martin is funny yet a master in storywriting"
    Where does An Object of Beauty rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    It seems so personally written as if it really happened to him. I was impressed because it sounded like he did his research in the Art World.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Campbell Scott!!! He can hypnotize me with his voice.


    Which character – as performed by Campbell Scott – was your favorite?

    This was written in
    The third person so in essense, he seemed removed yet poignantly told .


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I listened to the whole book in one sitting but I listened to certain excerpts I wanted repeating.


    Any additional comments?

    I love Campbell Scott! I
    Must have 4-7 narrated by him. I actually sought his
    Narratives for that very reason. I'm a big fan of his beautiful rhetoric and diction.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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