The Dud Avocado by Elaine Dundy
'One of the funniest books I've ever read' - Gore Vidal*The Dud Avocado gained instant cult status on first publication and remains a timeless portrait of a woman hellbent on living. It is, as the Guardian observes, 'one of the best novels about growing up fast'. Sally Jay Gorce is a woman with a mission.
It's the 1950s, she's young, and she's in Paris. Having dyed her hair pink, she wears evening dresses in the daytime and vows to go native in a way not even the natives can manage. Embarking on an educational programme that includes an affair with a married man (which fizzles out when she realises he's single and wants to marry her); nights in cabarets and jazz clubs in the company of assorted "citizens of the world"; an entanglement with a charming psychopath; and a bit part in a film financed by a famous matador.
But an education like this doesn't come cheap. Will our heroine be forced back to the States to fulfill her destiny as a librarian, or can she keep up her whirlwind Parisian existence?*A champagne cocktail ... Rich, invigorating, and deceptively simple to the taste ...
One falls for Sally Jay Gorce from a great height from the first sentence - ObserverAs delightful and delicate an examination of how it is to be twenty and in love and in Paris as I've ever read - Sunday TimesI had to tell someone how much I enjoyed The Dud Avocado. It made me laugh, scream, and guffaw (which, incidentally, is a great name for a law firm). - Groucho Marx