Baker & Taylor Albert Schmidt, a retired lawyer, copes with the boredom of retirement, the devastating loss of his wife, and his Ivy League daughter's new fiance, until an unexpected new love brings the promise of a new life
Blackwell North Amer After years of careful management, the life of Albert Schmidt - proud, traditional gentleman and lawyer of the old school - lies about him in shambles. The wife he adored is recently dead. The clients he has served superbly and devotedly throughout his long career are turning to his firm's aggressive young comers as Schmidt stumbles into early retirement. And relations with his only child are going from bad to worse. Charlotte, once the flower of all her father's hopes, and the sole beneficiary of the best of everything he could provide, has matured into a banal yuppie, only too willing to apply her peerless education to work in public relations. And now a desperate quarrel divides them: Charlotte announces her intention to marry a man Schmidt cannot approve of, for reasons he can scarcely admit - even to himself. As the beleaguered father gropes his way out of the corners he is forever backing himself into, he finds the possibility of regeneration, perhaps even happiness, in a new love the old "Schmidtie" could not have imagined. Set in the Hamptons and Manhattan, infused with black humor and startling eroticism, Louis Begley's fourth novel casts a cold, pitiless eye on a class once-ascendant on the eastern seaboard as it is pushed aside by those whose fortunes are rising. About Schmidt is a meditation on loneliness and on the power of romance to unlock the most impenetrable recesses of the heart; it brilliantly enlarges Begley's exploration of the tragic themes that haunt his earlier works.
Baker & Taylor Albert Schmidt, a retired WASP lawyer, copes with the boredom of retirement, the devastating loss of his wife, and his Ivy League daughter's new fiance+a7, an ambitious, Jewish drone, until an unexpected new love brings the promise of a new life. 17,500 first printing.