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Pleasure of My Company, The: A Novella by…

Pleasure of My Company, The: A Novella (edition 2004)

by Steve Martin

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2,014614,782 (3.71)81
Title:Pleasure of My Company, The: A Novella
Authors:Steve Martin
Info:Hyperion (2004), Paperback, 176 pages
Collections:Your library

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The Pleasure of My Company by Steve Martin

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» See also 81 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 61 (next | show all)
Daniel Pecan Cambridge is a man with a whole host of problems. He can't step off curbs, he can't allow the lights in his apartment to drop below or move above a certain wattage. His life is a series of rules that, when broken, result in utter distress. He's a man chasing the love of his life, Elizabeth the Realtor, but is she truly what he wants? What would make his chaotic world truly inhabitable?

The Pleasure of My Company is a different animal than Shopgirl. What it lacks in the deep insight of human behavior that Shopgirl showcased, it makes up for in small humorous observations. The book, overall, is light and pleasing. ( )
  Lepophagus | Jun 14, 2018 |
I had a little trouble a few times because there's almost no dialogue and more than once I was worried that Daniel was completely lying and I was going to suddenly read that we were in a hospital or something.

But, I was wrong thank goodness and I really liked it. The ending especially was adorable and I really liked the writing. ( )
  ylimejane | Feb 7, 2018 |
This book was witty and clever and made me laugh out loud on several occasions. Daniel, the main character, with his many absurd hangups is likable and genuine. I cheered for him throughout the story. Steve Martin is brilliant. ( )
  TBoerner | Mar 22, 2017 |
Ray Porter
  jmail | Mar 21, 2016 |
Great story about Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Martin's main character, Daniel, is fleshed out well. And Martin is quite a good writer. The main problem I had was that the novella ended like a Hollywood sitcom: all the problems were solved neatly, and everyone lived happily ever after, all in a very few pages. So that while the story started out quite plausibly, I couldn't quite buy the sudden turn of events and felt somehow cheated. ( )
  fromthecomfychair | Feb 11, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 61 (next | show all)
The Pleasure of My Company is a delightful novel as warm as the California sun. Martin has managed to capture in Daniel, the essence of a likeable zany man. Daniel's eventual success at having a happy life despite his many handicaps, is uplifting because it reminds us that life is not all bad all the time. It is always fun to root for the underdog and have him win. It might take some doing but Martin shows us that there are indeed "takers for the quiet heart."
added by stephmo | editMostly Fiction, Poornima Apte (Jan 25, 2004)
At first, "The Pleasure of My Company" seems unlikely to amount to more than a conglomeration of moments and observations, which, however droll or moving they may be, do not a novel make. But Martin pulls it together...
added by stephmo | editSalon.com, Laura Miller (Oct 28, 2003)
This novel, like its protagonist, is thoroughly engaging and entertaining, at least at first. Daniel's struggles to reacquaint himself with the pleasures of human interaction are at turns funny, heart-wrenching and inspiring.
The ending of Steve Martin's new novella is so sweetly sentimental, it'd give John Steinbeck an ice cream headache. This doesn't spoil the book -- or even the ending, really -- but hard-bitten and hard-boiled readers beware: Martin's a softie at heart.
''The Pleasure of My Company'' is one of those small, appealing-looking books that promise pleasant diversions and few demands.
added by stephmo | editNew York Times, Janet Maslin (Oct 9, 2003)
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If I can get from here to the pillar box
If I can get from here to the lamp-post
If I can get from here to the front gate
before a car comes round the corner . . .
Carolyn Murray will come to tea
Carolyn Murray will love me too
Carolyn Murray will marry me
But only if I get from here to there
before a car comes round the corner . . .

--Mick Gowar
Oxford's One Hundred Years of Poetry for Children
To my mother and father
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This all started because of a clerical error.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0786888016, Paperback)

Readers expecting something zany, something crudely humorous from Steve Martin's second novel, The Pleasure of My Company, will discover much greater riches. While the book has a sense of humor, Martin moves everywhere with a gentler, lighter touch in this elegant little fiction that verges on the profound and poetic.

Daniel Pecan Cambridge is the narrator and central consciousness of the novel (actually a novella). Daniel, an ex-Hewlett-Packard communiqué encoder, is a savant whose closely proscribed world is bounded on every side by neuroses and obsessions. He cannot cross the street except at driveways symmetrically opposed to each, and he cannot sleep unless the wattage of the active light bulbs in his apartment sums to 1,125. Daniel's starved social life is punctuated by twice-weekly visits from a young therapist in training, Clarissa; by his prescription pick-ups from a Rite Aid pharmacist, Zandy; and by his "casual" meetings with the bleach-blond real estate agent, Elizabeth, who is struggling to sell apartments across the street. But Daniel's dysfunctional routines are shattered one day when he becomes entangled in the chaos of Clarissa's life as a single mother. Taking care of Clarissa's tiny son, Teddy, Daniel begins to emerge from the safety of logic, magic squares, and obsessive counting.

Martin's craftsmanship is remarkable. The tightly packed novella paints rich portraits with restraint and balance, including nothing extraneous to Daniel's world. The book does not try for pyrotechnics but is contented with a Zen-like simplicity in both prose and plot. Avoiding the crushing bleakness of much contemporary fiction, Martin insists through Daniel--a man haunted by horrors of his own making--that there is possibility for compassion, that broken lives can actually be healed. --Patrick O'Kelley

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:21:45 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Daniel, a troubled man who lives alone, detached from the world, passes his time filling out contest applications and counting ceiling tiles, until his attachment to Clarissa and Teddy helps him rediscover the outside world.

(summary from another edition)

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