A Visit from the Goon Squad

Stephanie Character Analysis

Christopher’s mother and Bennie’s wife and business associate, Stephanie moves from New York City to the wealthy community of Crandale with her family. A tattooed woman and recovering drug addict, Stephanie feels out of place in Crandale and struggles to connect with the residents. She feels ridiculous because of the energy she puts into trying to connect the women she doesn’t identify with. Stephanie loves Bennie, but after Bennie’s past infidelities, she worries constantly that he is cheating on her. Her fears eventually become reality, and she and Bennie divorce.

Stephanie Quotes in A Visit from the Goon Squad

The A Visit from the Goon Squad quotes below are all either spoken by Stephanie or refer to Stephanie. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Time and Memory Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Anchor Books edition of A Visit from the Goon Squad published in 2011.
Chapter 7 Quotes

Stephanie and Bennie had lived in Crandale a year before they were invited to a party. It wasn't a place that warmed easily to strangers…It wore on Stephanie more than she'd expected, dropping off Chris for kindergarten, waving or smiling at some blond mother releasing blond progeny from her SUV or Hummer, and getting back a pinched, quizzical smile whose translation seemed to be: Who are you again? How could they not know, after months of daily mutual sightings? They were snobs or idiots or both, Stephanie told herself, yet she was inexplicably crushed by their coldness.

Related Characters: Stephanie (speaker), Bennie Salazar
Page Number: 111
Explanation and Analysis:

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The topic was the presence of Al Qaeda in the New York area. Operatives were present, Bill confided, especially in the outer boroughs, possibly in communication with one another (Stephanie noticed Clay's pale eyebrows suddenly lift, and his head gave a single odd jerk, as if he had water in one ear), but the question was: how strong a link did they have to the mother ship—here Bill laughed—because any kook with a grudge could call himself Al Qaeda, but if he lacked money, training, backup (Clay gave another quick head shake, then flicked his eyes at Bennie, to his right), it made no sense to allocate resources…

Related Characters: Stephanie (speaker), Bennie Salazar
Page Number: 116
Explanation and Analysis:

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Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

"I want interviews, features, you name it," Bosco went on. "Fill up my life with that shit. Let's document every fucking humiliation. This is reality, right? You don't look good anymore twenty years later, especially when you've had half your guts removed. Time's a goon, right? Isn't that the expression?"

Related Characters: Bosco (speaker), Stephanie
Page Number: 127
Explanation and Analysis:

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Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

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Stephanie Character Timeline in A Visit from the Goon Squad

The timeline below shows where the character Stephanie appears in A Visit from the Goon Squad. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 2: The Gold Cure
Time and Memory Theme Icon
Identity, Authenticity, and Meaning Theme Icon
Ruin and Redemption Theme Icon
...drive has expired, and he is not sure if his recent divorce from his wife, Stephanie, or the battle over his son, Christopher, has caused it. He sips the coffee and... (full context)
Chapter 7: A to B
Time and Memory Theme Icon
Identity, Authenticity, and Meaning Theme Icon
Connection, Disconnection, and Technology Theme Icon
Fame, Art, and Popular Culture Theme Icon
Bennie and Stephanie have moved with their son Christopher to a wealthy community called Crandale. At this point,... (full context)
Time and Memory Theme Icon
Identity, Authenticity, and Meaning Theme Icon
...the Crandale Country Club. In the locker room, a woman named Kathy says hello to Stephanie. Stephanie recognizes her because Kathy’s son goes to Christopher’s school. Stephanie notes that her body... (full context)
Identity, Authenticity, and Meaning Theme Icon
Connection, Disconnection, and Technology Theme Icon
Fame, Art, and Popular Culture Theme Icon
Three weeks later, Stephanie and Bennie are invited to a party after a neighbor discovers that Bennie signed his... (full context)
Identity, Authenticity, and Meaning Theme Icon
Connection, Disconnection, and Technology Theme Icon
At the neighbor’s cocktail party, Stephanie talks with Kathy, who introduces Stephanie and Bennie to her husband, Clay. Clay wears seersucker... (full context)
Identity, Authenticity, and Meaning Theme Icon
Connection, Disconnection, and Technology Theme Icon
Stephanie and Kathy soon become successful tennis partners, playing against other Crandale women. Kathy’s status in... (full context)
Identity, Authenticity, and Meaning Theme Icon
Connection, Disconnection, and Technology Theme Icon
Ruin and Redemption Theme Icon
...at Bennie, suggesting he may be a terrorist. They leave the party and Bennie asks Stephanie what he is doing living in a place like Crandale. Stephanie tries to defend the... (full context)
Identity, Authenticity, and Meaning Theme Icon
Connection, Disconnection, and Technology Theme Icon
Bennie begins giving Stephanie a hard time about playing tennis with Crandale women, whom he calls fascists. Stephanie is... (full context)
Time and Memory Theme Icon
Connection, Disconnection, and Technology Theme Icon
Ruin and Redemption Theme Icon
Stephanie begins scheduling her tennis games later in the day so Bennie won’t see her in... (full context)
Fame, Art, and Popular Culture Theme Icon
Ruin and Redemption Theme Icon
The following spring, Stephanie’s brother, Jules, is released from prison, where he’d spent five years for the attempted rape... (full context)
Connection, Disconnection, and Technology Theme Icon
Ruin and Redemption Theme Icon
One morning, Bennie asks if Stephanie is driving to the city for work. She has begun leaving her tennis outfit at... (full context)
Identity, Authenticity, and Meaning Theme Icon
Stephanie cancels her game and, returning to the kitchen, finds Jules at the window. He asks... (full context)
Time and Memory Theme Icon
Connection, Disconnection, and Technology Theme Icon
Ruin and Redemption Theme Icon
On the ride to the city, Jules mentions that he plans to join Stephanie in her meeting with Bosco. She wonders if this is some kind of punishment for... (full context)
Time and Memory Theme Icon
Identity, Authenticity, and Meaning Theme Icon
Connection, Disconnection, and Technology Theme Icon
Ruin and Redemption Theme Icon
Jules admits it may just be Crandale that is making Stephanie and Bennie seem different. The place is packed with Republicans, and Jules can’t believe Stephanie... (full context)
Time and Memory Theme Icon
Fame, Art, and Popular Culture Theme Icon
Ruin and Redemption Theme Icon
Before going upstairs, Stephanie explains that Bosco is different than he was when the Conduits were still playing. She... (full context)
Time and Memory Theme Icon
Identity, Authenticity, and Meaning Theme Icon
Connection, Disconnection, and Technology Theme Icon
Fame, Art, and Popular Culture Theme Icon
Ruin and Redemption Theme Icon
Bosco tells Stephanie that he wants interviews and features in magazines. He wants to record every humiliation, depicting... (full context)
Time and Memory Theme Icon
Identity, Authenticity, and Meaning Theme Icon
Connection, Disconnection, and Technology Theme Icon
Ruin and Redemption Theme Icon
Stephanie leaves feeling defeated, but Jules is thrilled by the new opportunity. He buys a planner... (full context)
Identity, Authenticity, and Meaning Theme Icon
Fame, Art, and Popular Culture Theme Icon
After a second meeting, Stephanie goes to her boss’s office. Dolly (La Doll) tells Stephanie that she can feel her... (full context)
Time and Memory Theme Icon
Connection, Disconnection, and Technology Theme Icon
Ruin and Redemption Theme Icon
Stephanie and Jules drive back to Crandale, where they pick Christopher up from soccer practice. He... (full context)
Connection, Disconnection, and Technology Theme Icon
Ruin and Redemption Theme Icon
When Bennie arrives home, he goes straight into the shower. Stephanie decides to get into the shower with him, remembering that they had bought the double... (full context)
Identity, Authenticity, and Meaning Theme Icon
Connection, Disconnection, and Technology Theme Icon
Ruin and Redemption Theme Icon
Stephanie leaves the house and goes into the yard. She can’t understand why this instance of... (full context)
Chapter 13: Pure Language
Time and Memory Theme Icon
Identity, Authenticity, and Meaning Theme Icon
Connection, Disconnection, and Technology Theme Icon
...since she was a child because her mother, Dolly, was a friend with Bennie’s ex-wife, Stephanie. Their food arrives, and Bennie is careful not to wake Cara-Ann, who sleeps by his... (full context)
Time and Memory Theme Icon
Identity, Authenticity, and Meaning Theme Icon
Connection, Disconnection, and Technology Theme Icon
Fame, Art, and Popular Culture Theme Icon
Ruin and Redemption Theme Icon
...office twenty-some-odd years ago and brought him a fish. After Bennie lost his job and Stephanie divorced him, he searched out Scotty. He asks Scotty what he told him, and Scotty... (full context)