First published in 1962 (her first novel was Young Man With a Horn, about Bix Beiderbecke, but I never got on with that because of my deaf ear for jazz), modern readers will relish the breezily accepted materialism, the pin-sharp portrait of a tiny part of society, as if picked out in Californian sunlight. It is also knowing and wise: a lesson in how wisdom is worth more than intelligence – not that intelligence is to be denigrated. [Deborah] Eisenberg says this book ‘should never be out of print’, and I couldn’t agree more. This novel, despite its specific setting, hasn’t aged in the slightest: really good writing like this doesn’t age. It’s always up to date.
—from Nicholas Lezard’s review of Cassandra at the Wedding in The Guardian. Though we wished he had “got on” with Young Man with a Horn—you don’t need an ear for jazz to enjoy it, though reading it might make you want one.