When Ben Gazzara and his wife, Elke, reluctantly agree to adopt the pet dachshund their daughter no longer wants, the couple unknowingly takes a new member into their family. Neither of the Gazzaras is a “dog person,” and the sudden presence of a pet in the lives of these jet-setters appears at first uncertain. However, the ever-sweet, playful, and surprisingly smart Maxi immediately endears herself, and soon she becomes the Gazzaras’ unlikely “child” in the empty nest of their Madison Avenue townhouse. The little dog accompanies the pair everywhere — to the theater, restaurants, dinner parties, world-class hotels, receptions for heads of state, and even the dentist. Madison Avenue Maxi is the story of a love affair between a dog and her owners. With heartfelt humor and a dog lover’s eye, Gazzara chornicles Maxi’s antics in Manhattan as well as at their second home in Tuscany and over travels to the French Riviera, Brazil, Spain, and other luxurious locales. Along the way she meets celebrities such as Roman Polanski, Gena Rowlands, John Voigt, Danielle Steele, Gay Talese, Peter Bogdanovich, New York’s mayor Michael Bloomberg, and Frank Gehry. Madison Avenue Maxi is a warm, touching memoir of man — and woman’s — best friend.
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