Kuczynski, Alex 1968(?)-
Kuczynski, Alex 1968(?)-
(Alexandra Louise Kuczynski)
PERSONAL: Born c. 1968, in Lima, Peru; daughter of Pedro-Pablo Kuczynski (former Peruvian government minister); married Charles Porter Stevenson, Jr. (an investor), November 30, 2002. Education: Graduated from Barnard College.
CAREER: Journalist. New York Times, New York, NY, reporter and Styles columnist. Previously worked at the New York Observer.
Beauty Junkies: Inside Our $15 Billion Obsession with Cosmetic Surgery, Doubleday (New York, NY), 2006.
“Thursday Styles Critical Shopper” columnist for the New York Times. Also contributor to periodicals and magazines, including Vanity Fair, Harper’s Bazaar, Allure, New York Times Magazine, Elle, and the New York Times Book Review.
SIDELIGHTS: Alex Kuczynski began reporting for the New York Times in the late 1990s and spent most of that time as the author of the “Thursday Styles Critical Shopper” column. Aside from writing her column, Kuczynski also contributes to numerous other periodicals.
Kuczynski’s first book, Beauty Junkies: Inside Our $15 Billion Obsession with Cosmetic Surgery, was published in 2006. In it she describes how America’s Hollywood-driven average citizens strive to achieve and then maintain the appearance of a model or actor through plastic surgery. Kuczynski, who has also undergone numerous surgeries to improve her appearance, calls it a national addiction. In an Entertainment Weekly review, Jennifer Reese likened the book to a “women’s magazine piece stretched to 278 pages.” Both Kathryn Masterson, in a Chicago Tribune review, and Toni Bentley, in a New York Times Book Review article, found different strong points in the book. Masterson noted that Kuczynski “has a keen eye and a talent for description, and she is at her best exposing the hucksters and snake-oil sellers in the business.” Bentley stated: “Kuczynski’s book is most interesting when she switches from the confessional to the informative, as in her brief but fascinating chapter on the history of plastic surgery.”
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES
America’s Intelligence Wire, October 2, 2006, John Gibson, author interview.
Booklist, September 1, 2006, Barbara Jacobs, review of Beauty Junkies: Inside Our $15 Billion Obsession with Cosmetic Surgery, p. 32.
Chicago Tribune, November 1, 2006, Kathryn Master-son, review of Beauty Junkies.
Entertainment Weekly, October 20, 2006, Jennifer Reese, review of Beauty Junkies, p. 85.
Houston Chronicle, October 6, 2006, Barbara Liss, review of Beauty Junkies.
New York Post, October 16, 2006, Liz Smith, review of Beauty Junkies.
New York Times Book Review, October 22, 2006, Toni Bentley, review of Beauty Junkies.
Newsweek, October 30, 2006, Barbara Kantrowitz, review of Beauty Junkies, p. 54.
Publishers Weekly, January 26, 2006, review of Beauty Junkies, p. 40; July 24, 2006, Penny Kaganoff, “Chasing Beauty,” p. 46.