THE GIRL ON THE COCA-COLA TRAY by Nancy Winters

THE GIRL ON THE COCA-COLA TRAY

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Jenny Sue from Bronxville is her mother's image of the perfect Good Girl on the Coca Cola tray in the basement rumpus room of their house in Bronxville. But, during the changes of the post-Fifties, this convent-bred cliche is to some extent her own victim. Having no real sense of self, she'll pliantly accept anything that's imposed on her particularly after she marries Feen (Hyman Feinstein). ""Other girls had boyfriends. I had mistakes."" Actually Feen who is twenty years older is gross if worldly (he does manage to tell her mother off on the fine distinctions between coquette and cocotte) and her marital seminar includes converting from Ritz crackers to matzos, ""bottom"" to ""ass,"" and sex in the craw--a taste she can't seem to acquire. During this time her mother gets a fatal cancer and after all those years of Segal locks, finds out that death is ""an inside job."" Feen is as sensitive as usual (he forced her to go in alone to have that abortion)--""Think of all the years you hated her and how she's fucked you up."" The real life learning experiences go on and on (her stepfather grabs all her money, Feen throws her out on that ass) and she finally realizes that any Good Girl goes really wrong by not knowing who she is. Nancy Winters is a fetchingly funny writer and a nice change after all that other emancipated bitch chic. Important it's not--disarmingly sympathetic it is.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1976
Publisher: Dial