The Sky’s The Limit: Passion and Property In Manhattan is New York Times bestseller Steve Gaines (Philistines at the Hedgerow) foray into the cutthroat world of the Manhattan real estate business. The blurbs on the back succinctly and perfectly describe this book:
“Breezy, irreverent…amusing…Gaines has found… a place worthy of its own unauthorized biography, replete with scandals, scurrilous characters, assorted bacchanalia, and all manner of wretched excess”And dish he does very well. This book really would make a great E! True Hollywood Story, except it’s not in Hollywood – it’s Manhattan. They’d have to call it an E! True Manhattan Story. The story is a voyeuristic look into the hoity-toity people and players of the upper east side of Manhattan, an area that has a great concentration of wealth and power.
“A satisfying comedy of manners and snobbishness and land lust among Americas overachievers… Gaines knows how to tell a story, and he knows how to dish.”
I didn’t quite know what to expect with this book. Would it be a snobbish bore where the rich don’t get what they want and complain about it? Well, to a degree it is. There are some juicy stories on certain celebrities wanting to get into buildings and not being able to. Particularly interesting was how Nixon got snubbed and how Vanderbilt sued to get entry into a building.
Gaines shows how the Upper East Side changed by giving us Tommy Hilfiger’s (a “garmento”) story. Through the use of his “board package,” Hilfiger was able to gain entry into one of the best of the good buildings.
Overall, this is a great book for those wanting to know about the scandalous characters of Upper East Side real estate.