Cover image for The Dakota Winters : a novel
Title:
The Dakota Winters : a novel
Title:
The Dakota Winters : a novel
Personal Author:
Publisher Info:
New York, NY, U.S.A. : Ecco, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, [2018]
Physical Description:
326 pages ; 24 cm
General Note:
Pagination may vary.
Abstract:
It's the fall of 1979 in New York City when twenty-three-year-old Anton Winter, back from the Peace Corps and on the mend from a nasty bout of malaria, returns to his childhood home in the Dakota. Anton's father, the famous late-night host Buddy Winter, is there to greet him, himself recovering from a breakdown. Before long, Anton is swept up in an effort to reignite Buddy's stalled career, a mission that takes him from the gritty streets of New York, to the slopes of the Lake Placid Olympics, to the Hollywood Hills, to the blue waters of the Bermuda Triangle, and brings him into close quarters with the likes of Johnny Carson, Ted and Joan Kennedy, and a seagoing John Lennon. But the more Anton finds himself enmeshed in his father's professional and spiritual reinvention, the more he questions his own path, and fissures in the Winter family begin to threaten their close bond.

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F BARB New or Popular Adult Fiction Book
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FIC BARB New or Popular Adult Fiction Book
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F BARBASH New or Popular Adult Fiction Book
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FIC BARB New or Popular Adult Fiction Book
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FIC BARB New or Popular Adult Fiction Book
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BARBASH, T. New or Popular Adult Fiction Book
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Summary

Summary

An evocative and wildly absorbing novel about the Winters, a family living in New York City's famed Dakota apartment building in the year leading up to John Lennon's assassination

It's the fall of 1979 in New York City when twenty-three-year-old Anton Winter, back from the Peace Corps and on the mend from a nasty bout of malaria, returns to his childhood home in the Dakota. Anton's father, the famous late-night host Buddy Winter, is there to greet him, himself recovering from a breakdown. Before long, Anton is swept up in an effort to reignite Buddy's stalled career, a mission that takes him from the gritty streets of New York, to the slopes of the Lake Placid Olympics, to the Hollywood Hills, to the blue waters of the Bermuda Triangle, and brings him into close quarters with the likes of Johnny Carson, Ted and Joan Kennedy, and a seagoing John Lennon.

But the more Anton finds himself enmeshed in his father's professional and spiritual reinvention, the more he questions his own path, and fissures in the Winter family begin to threaten their close bond. By turns hilarious and poignant, The Dakota Winters is a family saga, a page-turning social novel, and a tale of a critical moment in the history of New York City and the country at large.


Reviews 3

Publisher's Weekly Review

Barbash's spirited latest revolves around a family that lives in the Dakota, the Upper West Side apartment building where Rosemary's Baby was set and outside of which John Lennon was assassinated. Here, in 1980, 23-year-old Anton Winter is just back from a stint with the Peace Corps in Africa, where he contracted malaria. While recovering, he works for Teddy Kennedy's presidential campaign (Anton's mother is friends with Teddy's wife); goes sailing with his neighbor, John Lennon; gets a job as a busboy at a restaurant in Central Park; romances an English journalist; and-most importantly-helps his father, Buddy Winter, a famous TV talk show host (think Dick Cavett) who had a nervous breakdown two years ago and walked off his show, attempt a comeback. Barbash (The Last Good Chance) seamlessly mixes real-life celebrities into his fictitious narrative. All the backstage show business details ring true, as do the author's exhaustingly encyclopedic cultural references for 1980. Though the central relationship between Anton and his father barely strikes any sparks, the book is packed with diverting anecdotes and a beguiling cast, making for an immensely entertaining novel. (Dec.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


Booklist Review

*Starred Review* The punning title of Barbash's fleet-footed novel is a key to the wit propelling this brain-whirring tale of the pitiless spotlight of fame, hard-won comebacks, and father-son dynamics. The Dakota depicted here is not a western state but, rather, the legendary New York City apartment building, home to such stars as Lauren Bacall and Boris Karloff, and, in Barbash's imaginative variation, the quick-witted Winter family. Buddy Winter was a beloved TV talk-show host until he went to pieces on the air. Anton Winter, the elder of Buddy's two sons, narrates with Salingeresque concision and ruefulness. Back home in late 1979, after a Peace Corps stint and a grim bout with malaria, Anton is drawn into his father's quest for a new show. As he reluctantly considers how much Buddy relies on him and offers delectable behind-the-scenes talk-show revelations, Anton also becomes an agent for creative renewal for their friend and neighbor John Lennon. Drolly observant, Anton describes the Lennon fans swarming the Dakota, the Lake Placid Winter Olympics, his astute mother's part in Ted Kennedy's presidential campaign, the simultaneous rise of crime and gentrification, a wild sea adventure with John, and Lennon's tragic murder. Punctuated by clever dialogue and crisp social critiques, Barbash's incisive, funny, and poignant portrait of talented people and a city in flux illuminates the risks of celebrity and the struggle to become one's true self.--Donna Seaman Copyright 2018 Booklist


Library Journal Review

In fall 1979, 23-year-old Anton Winter leaves his Peace Corps assignment in Africa to recover from a near-fatal bout of malaria at his family's apartment in the Dakota, also home to John Lennon, Yoko Ono, and a host of other well-connected New Yorkers. Anton's father, Buddy, is on the mend after a spectacular on-air nervous breakdown that deep-sixed his successful nine-year career as a brilliantly funny late-night talk show host. Buddy looks to Anton to help him craft a comeback, relying on Anton's skillful navigation of the entertainment waters even as nervous caution about Buddy's plan dogs network executives and Buddy's wife and other two children. For the next year, Buddy's dependence on Anton intensifies just as his son's restless need to forge his own life is fueled by a near-disastrous sea voyage with Lennon, who is on fire with a renewed creative streak, a fascinating and tragic reminder that his murder is just months away. VERDICT Barbash (The Last Good Chance) has written a beautiful, evocative novel of family devotion, celebrity, downfall, and survival, framed by the political and cultural upheavals of America on the cusp of a new decade. Irresistibly tender. [See Prepub Alert, 6/21/18.]-Beth Andersen, formerly with Ann Arbor Dist. Lib., MI © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.