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I Remember Nothing: and Other Reflections Hardcover – Deckle Edge, November 9, 2010


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I Remember Nothing: and Other Reflections + I Feel Bad About My Neck: And Other Thoughts on Being a Woman + Crazy Salad and Scribble Scribble: Some Things About Women and Notes on Media
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Knopf; First Edition edition (November 9, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307595609
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307595607
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.9 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.7 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (247 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #226,469 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Reading these succinct, razor-sharp essays by veteran humorist (I Feel Bad About My Neck), novelist, and screenwriter-director Ephron is to be reminded that she cut her teeth as a New York Post writer in the 1960s, as she recounts in the most substantial selection here, "Journalism: A Love Story." Forthright, frequently wickedly backhanded, these essays cover the gamut of later-life observations (she is 69), from the dourly hilarious title essay about losing her memory, which asserts that her ubiquitous senior moment has now become the requisite Google moment, to several flimsy lists, such as "Twenty-five Things People Have a Shocking Capacity to Be Surprised by Over and Over Again," e.g., "Movies have no political effect whatsoever." Shorts such as the several "I Just Want to Say" pieces feature Ephron's trademark prickly contrariness and are stylistically digestible for the tabloids. Other essays delve into memories of fascinating people she knew, such as the Lillian Hellman of Pentimento, whom she adored until the older woman's egomania rubbed her the wrong way. Most winning, however, are her priceless reflections on her early life, such as growing up in Beverly Hills with her movie-people parents, and how being divorced shaped the bulk of her life, in "The D Word." There's an elegiac quality to many of these pieces, handled with wit and tenderness. (Nov.) (c)
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

The legions of readers who loved I Feel Bad about My Neck (2006) will pounce on Ephron’s pithy new collection. A master of the jujitsu essay, Ephron leaves us breathless with rueful laughter. As the title suggests, she writes about the weird vagaries of memory as we age, although she is happy to report that the Senior Moment has become the Google Moment. Not that any gadget rescued her when she failed to recognize her own sister. But the truth is, Ephron remembers a lot. Take her stinging reminiscence of her entry into journalism at Newsweek in the early 1960s, when “girls,” no matter how well qualified, were never considered for reporter positions. An accomplished screenwriter (When Harry Met Sally . . . and Julie & Julia) in a family of screenwriters, Ephron looks further back to her Hollywood childhood and her mother’s struggles with alcohol. Whether she takes on bizarre hair problems, culinary disasters, an addiction to online Scrabble, the persistent pain of a divorce, or that mean old devil, age, Ephron is candid, self-deprecating, laser-smart, and hilarious. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Now a popular blogger in addition to everything else, Ephron hit it so big with her last best-seller, a 500,000 print run is planned for her latest. --Donna Seaman

More About the Author

Nora Ephron has received Academy Award nominations for Best Original Screenplay for When Harry Met Sally, Silkwood, and Sleepless in Seattle, which she also directed. She lives in New York City with her husband, writer Nicholas Pileggi.

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Customer Reviews

This was a fun and easy book to read.
ELINOR C. GALLAGHER
I bought copies of both books as gifts for all my friends, and will continue to do so.
L. Grasl
Although I really like Nora's writing, I found this book way too short.
D. Thomson

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

125 of 134 people found the following review helpful By prisrob TOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 9, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Nora Ephron has written a very humorous book with which I agree. She makes fun of herself as she ages, and I think many of us can identify with her plight. As she says, her memory is akin to a disc, it is not full, it is empty.

'I Remember Nothing' is a small book but filled with some wisdom and observations that make it well worth the read. The first chapter is a take on the title, 'I Remember Nothing', and it appears that is true. She relates many of the instances she can remember where she forgot. The films, books and times that were filled with fun, but gosh, what was the name of that actor. We can relate, where are my keys and glasses? Nora copes with her forgetfulness by keeping a list of things she refuses to know about. I agree with The Kardashians, American Idol and the Bachelor. But, soccer and mojitos, no way. 'Who Are You' another chapter deals with people you can't remember. A silly chapter, really. I have no trouble telling someone I am sorry but I can't remember their first name. Nora goes through hoops, it seems, to disguise her forgetfulness. 'Journalism, A Love Story, is the reason to read this book. This is a love story of her profession, and she tells us about her first job at 'Newsweek' and her rise as a woman in the field of journalism. In-between she gives us a few stories of Philip Graham, Newsweek's owner and his difficulty with Bi-Polar Disorder. The life of a young woman working in 1960's New York City, hard liquor, no wine; no take-out and lots of swearing, but not the F word. She got a job at the New York Post and started writing by-lines, and she learned her craft. She then went on to writing for magazines and films. She married and divorced and remarried. She learned that she was correct, she loved journalism and it was right for her.
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121 of 140 people found the following review helpful By montanarose on November 14, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I love Nora Ephron: her books, her screenplays, her essays. But, boy, did she snooker me into this one. I purchased it for my Kindle and inhaled it in under an hour. I got to the end and said "huh?" to myself ( "huh?" as in, is that all there is?)

Yeah, there were a few bon mots, a few chuckles, but not much of substance (even humorous substance). I wish I'd gone to my local bookstore and curled up in an easy chair with a latte and a copy of this book: I could have polished it off around the same time I finished my latte.

What's sad is that Ephron could offer us -- her sixty-ish female cohorts -- so much more. More depth, more reality, more humanity; along with the humor and the brittle witticisms. Save your money on this one: go to your local bookstore and enjoy that latte for a third of the price of the book.
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151 of 189 people found the following review helpful By Eileen Pollock on November 9, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Despite the title of this collection of essays, Nora Ephron remembers quite a bit, as she displays in this intermittently amusing semi-memoir, a slim, even underweight, volume of essays. There is superficial wit on display, glibness and the quick quip, but little substance. Her new book is surely destined to be a "huge best seller", as the jacket describes her previous foray, reflections on her crepey neck. Those readers who enjoyed "My Neck" will down her new book in one gulp. They may forget it as quickly.

Nora Ephron is a craftsmanly writer. But since her subject is herself, I can't help focusing on the personal side of this book. I found something rather sad in a woman who admits she jettisoned her first husband under the influence of the early 70's women's movement. This is of a piece with her penchant for acting on the mood of the present cultural moment. She is a too absorptive sponge, deeply in touch with popular delusions, though she disdains any belief system that might give her life meaning. One suspects she has chosen to marry at least two men because they are celebrated writers, and one turned out to have poor character. She is a woman of independent accomplishment, yet she makes sure to add flourish to her author bio with the carefully casual mention of her present husband, whose name she expects everyone to recognize. Is it strictly necessary to mention twice in the first several pages that you are a graduate of an Ivy League college? And then there's her sorry conclusion: "Now the most important thing about me is that I am old." There is much more that is important about Nora Ephron, particularly her loyal family, close friends and her talent. Many people appreciate her.

What has she learned from her experiences?
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27 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Anne Raymond on November 20, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I loved Nora Ephron's "I Remember Nothing: and Other Reflections". It is a book of musings - some serious, some funny, all interesting. I especially appreciate the way it was written making you feel like you're sitting across from a friend chatting over a cup of coffee. It is a short book but one that definitely hit the spot.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Robin on November 14, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Once again Nora Ephron gives us the chance to pretend we are her best friend and that's a great thing. Nora Ephron is one of the great essayists around. This book, like I Feel Bad About My Neck, is full of pithy observations about life at age 60 something in New York City. Ephron's merciless observations on growing older in the 21st century can't help but delight. (The way that Google, for example, has become the savior of aging dinner companions who can't remember the movie titles.)

There's an awful lot to laugh about in this book and as with her previous books, I loved every minute of it. But when it was done, I felt sad. Ephron has so much, but she seems depressed. She's wealthy and the excitment of living in NYC, while clearly dear to her, is not new. She's still on top of her game writing and directing movies, and yet there seems to be little that thrills her about that. (She barely mentions Julie & Julia.) Ephron badly misses her best friend Ruthie, who passed away and worries about her other friends. There is a strange essay about an annual Christmas dinner among friends where the hostess takes away Ephron's traditional assigned task of making dessert. The hostess's behavior is so odd that you can't help but wonder what else there is to the story--or what the hostess's reaction is going to be when she reads and extended chapter in a best selling book, about taking the job of pie maker away from Nora Ephron.

I couldn't put this book down, but it is very, very short and I finished it in a day. "I wish it were longer," is generally a great thing to say about a book but this book really should have been longer, 100% longer, to justify the price. Had it been a reasonable length, I would have given it five stars. If you love Nora Ephron, and I really do, keep that in mind.
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