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In the forward, DeMille names this his best and favorite work. I heartily agree. He also predicts it will still be relevant long after his death. I don't think there is any question.
John Sutter, a Gold Coast native, tax attorney, clever and cynical socialite and foremost a devoted family man is the hero and narrator of the tale. No one is better suited to describe the culture of living in the country's wealthiest neighborhood. His wife, Susan Stanhope Sutter, is from one of the wealthiest Gold Coast families. Her father's manipulation of her through his wealth play an important role in the tale. DeMille said she's in large part the ultimate male fantasy. Just listen to the story and you'll find out why that is true, if not understated.
But what attracted me to the story some 20 years ago and what has led to several subsequent readings, (and now listening!), is the premise of a mafia don moving into such a community. DeMille uses the obvious contrasts of two old American cultures, both with their own sets of etiquette, manners and unwritten rules to produce what I believe is one of best, (certainly the most fun), 20th century novels.
Christian Rummell far exceeds the great Scott Brick as the voice of John Sutter. That should be enough to impress any DeMille fan.
19 of 19 people found this review helpful
I have owned 'The Gold Coast' in paperback for years, but never got around to reading it. Then I saw the sequel - 'The Gate House' - in the book store and decided to read 'The Gold Coast' in audio form, so I downloaded it.
I have read all of DeMille's novels except for two, so decided to complete the cycle. I have enjoyed his other works, and have even read some of them twice or more.
This novel rises so far above his more recent works as to have been written by a different author. Not only is it a great read from the standpoint of excitement and suspense, but it's a grand love story, and future generations will recognize it not only as popular fiction, but also as great literature.
My wife doesn't read audio books, but I have insisted that she read my paperback version so we can each share the experiences together. The characters are so well developed, especially the narrator John Sutter and his wife Susan, that it's quite difficult not realizing they are fictional.
Just a little caution. There are some erotic scenes, so younger readers should defer reading until they are able to understand the context in which they are written rather than being tittilated by their explicitness.
In summary, this book had such a profound effect on me that I just had to download 'The Gate House' and began reading immediately!
I maintain a library of almost 2,000 novels, and I only get rid of those I don't intend to read again. This one will stay in my library until my dying day, and I will encourage my adult children to read it!
47 of 49 people found this review helpful