Good Stuff by Jennifer Grant
A Reminiscence of My Father, Cary Grant


6 Critic Reviews

Less a memoir than a hagiography—and a dull one at that.


Jennifer Grant is the only child of Cary Grant, who was, and continues to be, the epitome of all that is elegant, sophisticated, and deft. Almost half a century after Cary Grant’s retirement from the screen, he remains the quintessential romantic comic movie star. He stopped making movies when his daughter was born so that he could be with her and raise her, which is just what he did.

Good Stuff
is an enchanting portrait of the profound and loving relationship between a daughter and her father, who just happens to be one of America’s most iconic male movie stars.

Cary Grant’s own personal childhood archives were burned in World War I, and he took painstaking care to ensure that his daughter would have an accurate record of her early life. In Good Stuff, Jennifer Grant writes of their life together through her high school and college years until Grant’s death at the age of eighty-two.

Cary Grant had a happy way of living, and he gave that to his daughter. He invented the phrase “good stuff” to mean happiness. For the last twenty years of his life, his daughter experienced the full vital passion of her father’s heart, and she now—delightfully—gives us a taste of it.

She writes of the lessons he taught her; of the love he showed her; of his childhood as well as her own . . . Here are letters, notes, and funny cards written from father to daughter and those written from her to him . . . as well as bits of conversation between them (Cary Grant kept a tape recorder going for most of their time together).

She writes of their life at 9966 Beverly Grove Drive, living in a farmhouse in the midst of Beverly Hills, playing, laughing, dining, and dancing through the thick and thin of Jennifer's growing up; the years of his work, his travels, his friendships with “old Hollywood royalty” (the Sinatras, the Pecks, the Poitiers, et al.) and with just plain-old royalty (the Rainiers) . . .

We see Grant the playful dad; Grant the clown, sharing his gifts of laughter through his warm spirit; Grant teaching his daughter about life, about love, about boys, about manners and money, about acting and living.

Cary Grant was given the indefinable incandescence of charm. He was a pip . . .

Good Stuff
captures his special quality. It gives us the magic of a father’s devotion (and goofball-ness) as it reveals a daughter’s special odyssey and education of loving, and being loved, by a dad who was Cary Grant.

From the Hardcover edition.

About Jennifer Grant

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Jennifer Grant was born and raised in Los Angeles, California. She graduated from Stanford University with a degree in history. Before becoming an actor, she worked for a law firm and as a chef at Wolfgang Puck's Spago. Her first acting role was in Aaron Spelling's Beverly Hills, 90210, and she later appeared in Friends, Super Dave, and CSI, as well as several feature films. She lives with her son, Cary Benjamin, in Beverly Hills, California.
Published May 3, 2011 by Knopf. 192 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Humor & Entertainment. Non-fiction
Bestseller Status:
Peak Rank on May 22 2011
Weeks as Bestseller
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Critic reviews for Good Stuff
All: 6 | Positive: 3 | Negative: 3


Below average

Less a memoir than a hagiography—and a dull one at that.

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NY Times

Below average
on Jun 03 2011

There has never been a more devoted father and daughter. And yet, “Good Stuff” makes this unbridled love seem perhaps too much of a good thing.

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Publishers Weekly

Above average
on Feb 14 2011

Grant nicely chronicles for her father's fans the life behind the legend and the authentic image of parental love off the screen.

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NY Journal of Books

Below average
on May 03 2011

Indeed, much of the book seems to be an odd two-step around reality, as if Ms. Grant were attempting to write a memoir without surrendering any of her more personal memories.

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Washington Times

Above average
on Aug 05 2011

One of the nicest things about “Good Stuff” is that it doesn’t ignore the more unpleasant features of life in general and for her family in particular.

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Suite 101

on Jul 04 2011

Good Stuff is an interesting and heretofore unknown part of the life of actor Cary Grant. Through snippets from her lifetime with her father, Jennifer Grant takes readers inside their home and divulges how they lived as a loving family.

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