Steve Martin: The Great Comedian and… Novelist?

We all know Steve Martin as a comedian, most famous for his Saturday Night Live skits and his humorous roles in movies such as The Pink Panther and Cheaper By The Dozen. He’s a great singer too, and he plays a magnificent banjo. He’s known in the realms of entertainment as a talented actor and musician, but what a lot of people don’t know is that he has also written a few novels. He published his first book titled Cruel Shoes all the way back in 1979, which was a collection of satirical short stories and essays. Since then, he regularly had books published, with his most …

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We all know Steve Martin as a comedian, most famous for his Saturday Night Live skits and his humorous roles in movies such as The Pink Panther and Cheaper By The Dozen. He’s a great singer too, and he plays a magnificent banjo. He’s known in the realms of entertainment as a talented actor and musician, but what a lot of people don’t know is that he has also written a few novels. He published his first book titled Cruel Shoes all the way back in 1979, which was a collection of satirical short stories and essays. Since then, he regularly had books published, with his most recent piece released just last year.

 

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Martin’s most notable novel, An Object of Beautyis about the art world in New York City, and a blend of its simplicity, complexity, morality, and pretentiousness. The atmosphere in the story is surreal, portraying how the main character develops traits similar to the world she inhabits. It explores the idea that both society and art can be elegant on the surface, but hold darker secrets underneath. His classic satirical prose is definitely still present in this piece, yet the narrative still remains serious. It is a testament to Martin’s ability to explore both the satirical and intellectual worlds. 

Lacey Yeager is young, captivating, and ambitious enough to take the NYC 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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Another piece by Steve Martin worth checking out is his novella Shopgirl, published in 2000.

 

Steve Martin’s New York Times bestseller Shopgirl is now a major motion picture starring Steve Martin and Claire Danes. 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 . . .” 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 Steve Martin critical success, Shopgirl is a work of disarming tenderness.

 

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