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Shopgirl | [Steve Martin]

Shopgirl

Grammy Nominee for Best Spoken Word Album
Mirabelle, the "shopgirl" behind the glove counter at Neiman Marcus, is slightly lost, off-kilter, and shy. But there's something about Mirabelle. Steve Martin reads this charming novella. Hear an interview with the author and browse more Martin.
Regular Price:$21.27
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Publisher's Summary

One of the country's most acclaimed and beloved entertainers, Steve Martin has written a novella that is unexpectedly perceptive about relationships and life. Martin is profoundly wise when it comes to the inner workings of the human heart.

Mirabelle is the "shopgirl" of the title, a young woman, beautiful in a wallflowerish kind of way, who works behind the glove counter at Neiman Marcus "Selling things that nobody buys anymore..."

Slightly lost but not off-kilter, very shy, Mirabelle charms because of all that she is not: not glamorous, not aggressive, not self-aggrandizing. Still there is something about her that is irresistible.

Mirabelle captures the attention of Ray Porter, a wealthy businessman almost twice her age. As they tentatively embark on a relationship, they both struggle to decipher the language of love - with consequences that are both comic and heartbreaking. Filled with the kind of witty, discerning observations that have brought Martin critical success, Shopgirl is a work of disarming tenderness.

Don't miss Steve Martin, Christopher Buckley, and other humorists discussing their craft at the New Yorker Festival.

©2000 Steve Martin, All Rights Reserved; (P)2000 Simon & Schuster, Inc. All Rights Reserved, AUDIOWORKS Is an Imprint of Simon & Schuster Audio Division, Simon & Schuster, Inc.

What the Critics Say

  • Grammy Nominee for Best Spoken Word Album

"Martin's elegant, bleak, desolatingly sad first novella is in every sense his most serious work to date." (The New York Times Book Review)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.7 (549 )
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3.7 (97 )
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4.1 (94 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Virginia Greensboro, NC, USA 12-10-09
    Virginia Greensboro, NC, USA 12-10-09

    I like to read and always looking for a good book

    ratings
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    "Shop Girl"

    Loved this book I think he did a great job on it I was interested the whole time it kept me guessing the end was something i didnt expect -

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    mjchgo 04-13-08
    mjchgo 04-13-08 Member Since 2008
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    "nice story"

    Was nice to hear the book version after having seen the Steve Martin movie version.

    When you put the two together the story is more interesting with more depth and a deeper perspective that doesn't come across as well in the movie version.

    Watch the film, read (or hear) the book for a full experience of what I think the author intends.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Erica Gilbert, AZ, USA 01-13-08
    Erica Gilbert, AZ, USA 01-13-08
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    "Not what I expected"

    I was not impressed with this book. It reminded me to much of a high school essay written for english class. It was not what a expected from a comic great like steve martin.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lynn 05-09-07
    Lynn 05-09-07 Member Since 2001
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    19
    3
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    "Excellent listen"

    I recommend all of Steve Martin's novelettes. Really enjoyed this.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Deborah New York, NY, USA 11-07-06
    Deborah New York, NY, USA 11-07-06
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    "SO-SO"

    I was able to get through this story, but it was pretty boring. I was hoping it would pick up at some point or have a good ending, but it just droned on.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark leverett, MA, USA 10-22-06
    Mark leverett, MA, USA 10-22-06
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    "hollywood?"

    It's been a month since I listened to this book and in that time what cream has risen has spoiled.
    My lasting impression is I cared for none of the characters who's lives seem to revolve around sex and confussion. Is this life in Hollywood?
    A tale of urban waste.
    Listen if you wish, he does read it well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julie Clarke 07-20-06 Member Since 2014
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    "Excellent Novella"

    I listened to this book in just two sittings. I loved Martin's story and his direct, deadpan delivery, which makes the bittersweet story funny and believable. I can't wait to watch the movie.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J. Broadlands, VA, United States 11-22-04
    J. Broadlands, VA, United States 11-22-04
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    "Dreary"

    This is a dreary, depressing little book that's read in a dreay monotone voice by Steve Martin. The very least he could have done is read it with some expression. I'm half-way through it and feel compelled to finish it because I paid for it.

    4 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Meg Newark, DE, USA 05-11-06
    Meg Newark, DE, USA 05-11-06 Member Since 2012
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    5
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    "Steve Martin Has A Dark Side"

    This was a dark, but well written novella. The main character, Mirabelle, leads a sad and lonely life that is punctuated with bad relationships. Martin really hones in on the dark motivations of the men in Mirabelle's life. Martin's celebrity, however, leaves you wondering if he is merely transcribing his own fantasies - leaving the listener a bit unsettled in their perception of this comedic actor.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathryn washington, DC, USA 12-23-03
    Kathryn washington, DC, USA 12-23-03
    ratings
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    2
    1
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    "Less than desirable"

    "Shopgirl" does have its humorous moments, but it's not classic Martin. Rather, it's a darker brand of reality (if one considers LA to be reality). Martin's first full-length fiction book is as fully developed as the premise is original. Martin updates the age-old love triangle consisting, in his tale, of Mirabelle, a lonely young girl in need of true love; Ray Porter, a well-off older man exploring the ways of women; and Jeremy, a young convenient "knight," although he's hardly the shining-armor type.

    The title character is Mirabelle, 28, who moved to California with dreams of a "real" life but instead finds herself dependent on a myriad of anti-depressants and working at Neiman Marcus to pay off college loans. Her void in social interaction parallels her life outside of work. A sex-crazed girl in the perfume department seemingly foils Mirabelle at one point, but isn't given enough description or time to develop.

    Martin's prose is bland and overly descriptive. He does not provide enough depth or description in character development but goes well beyond when analyzing day-to-day life and characters' appearances and actions. This style occasionally impedes the flow of the story, but overall it enriches the text and forces the reader to pay more attention to one's unconscious observations throughout the daily routine. He accomplishes this with an omniscient narrator and thus lends a unique angle to the story. One technique, which Martin developed well but failed to use often enough, was his original dialogue. Like the great description of Ray's goal of getting into bed without a commitment, and Mirabelle's stereotypical interpretation of that as commitment and love.

    The novel is too short to develop more than the superficial plot of love triangle. Martin is clearly new to the genre and his novella leaves something to be desired. But he has the mark of a talented observer, and I hope he will develop this in another work with a less convenient turn of events.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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