Cover

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Title Page, Copyright Page, Dedication

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pp. i-vi

Table of Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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Acknowledgments

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pp. ix-x

...I want to thank Steve Woodall and Dominic Riley for teaching me what I needed to know about the restoration of old books. Neil Shapiro told me war stories of the advertising business, and Dan Mountain reminisced with me about the Chateau Marmont as it was in the 1980s. Peter Riegert taught me everything I’d never imagined about the heart and...

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1. A Box of Ashes

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pp. 1-81

...worse than it had been during the five years of their courtship or the ten years of their marriage, and given the fact that he and Pauline were nearly fifty now and had been having sex more or less forever, it wasn’t at all bad. Anyway, the sex was secondary. It was the kissing—warm, breathy, tender kisses before, during, and after—that mattered to him, he’d come to realize with some surprise, more than the familiar...

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2. Bernard, the Mummy

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pp. 82-100

...The grand prize, a Cuisinart, would have been even better, but Marilyn was very happy with the iron. She already owned an iron, of course, but not one with a telephone in the handle. “Look at this,” she said excitedly several days later, when the iron arrived in the mail. “You can talk on the phone while you’re ironing your shirt...

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3. The Naming of Parts

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pp. 101-115

...to her clitoris as “Little Nell,” and made a habit of bringing it up in casual conversation. “I’m taking Little Nell to the movies,” Rita told her one night soon after they started rooming together, and it took Joan a minute to remember what Rita was talking about. Occasionally, on Sunday mornings over coffee, Rita would lean across...

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4. Teeth

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pp. 116-135

...Kornfeld drove through the night and most of the next day to reach Parkersburg, Iowa, the town where he’d just been hired to teach World History at the high school. He drove like something was chasing him. His car was old and unreliable, and he told himself that if he stopped for very long, it might not start again. School would be starting in just a few days, and since this was his first full-time...

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5. Spivak in Babylon

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pp. 136-219

...Chicago’s largest advertising agencies. Previously he’d spent several years at Dunne, Crowell and Gold, a sweet-natured little Mom and Pop agency where everyone went bowling together twice a month and secretaries routinely brought homemade delicacies like chocolate-sauerkraut cake and mock apple pie made with Ritz crackers to the office. It hadn’t taken Leo very long to realize that Bowles and...