Them: Book summary and reviews of Them by Francine du Plessix Gray

Them

A Memoir of Parents

By Francine du Plessix Gray

Them
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  • Published in USA  May 2005,
    544 pages.

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Book Summary

At the height of their fame, Alexander Liberman and Tatiana du Plessix Gray were the grandest power couple in the New York City fashion world, gifted Russian émigrés who consorted with Dali and Dietrich and told American women how to look, where to travel, and what to read. As told by their daughter, the distinguished writer Francine du Plessix Gray, their saga combines romance, glamour, and pathos. Their adulation for success was as obsessive as their fierce, neurotic love for each other, and they treated everyone else - including Francine - with ruthless opportunism. Them is a work of Tolstoyan emotional power as well as a brilliant social history of its subjects' age.

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Book Awards

  • award image National Book Critics Circle Award, 2005

Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. Rich with history of early to mid-20th-century design and publishing, this memoir stands as an instructive model of how to write a difficult story honestly." - PW

"It provides a good look at many different aspects of 20th-century social and political history, which alone makes it worthwhile reading." - School Library Journal

"Starred Review. And so glamorous, talented, driven, and ruthless were Tatiana and Alexander, so grand and cosmopolitan their lives, so dark their secrets, du Plessix Gray's penetrating and unforgettable memoir of a peerless family reads like a great epic novel." - Booklist

"… in these pages [Gray] uses all her writerly gifts - her skills of observation, emotional recall and, yes, detachment - to give the reader an intense and remarkably powerful portrait of her mother and stepfather, and to do so with love, judgmental candor and at least a measure of forgiveness." - New York Times

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