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Imaginary Friends Paperback – March 18, 2003

15 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“A sharp-eyed and even sharper-clawed memory-play. . . . Provides . . . guilty pleasures, keeping the repartee both snappy and snappish.” --The Wall Street Journal

“A feast of wit and language . . . that grows into a hair-pulling duel even Don King could appreciate.” --Los Angeles Times

“Takes the prize for audacity. . . . Two august ladies of letters as you’ve never seen them before. . . . [I]n American theater, everybody loves a bitch with style.” --The New York Times

“A witty, swanky, thoroughly delightful intellectual vaudeville that’s as light as it is sneakily substantial.” --Newsday

“Nora Ephron knows how to refine the passions of Hellman and McCarthy into glittering comedy. . . . [She] also gives her dueling heroines some swipes worthy of Clare Boothe Luce’s long-form catfight, The Women.” –-The New York Sun

From the Inside Flap

Although Lillian Hellman and Mary McCarthy probably only met once in their lives, their names will be linked forever in the history of American literary feuds: they were legendary enemies, especially after McCarthy famously announced to the world that every word Hellman wrote was a lie, "including ‘and' and ‘the.'" The public battle, and the legal squabbling, that ensued ended, unsatisfactorily for all, with Hellman's death.

In Imaginary Friends, Nora Ephron brilliantly and hilariously resuscitates these two bigger-than-life women to give them a post-mortem second act, and the chance to really air their differences.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage (March 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1400034221
  • ISBN-13: 978-1400034222
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.4 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #785,916 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

34 of 39 people found the following review helpful By S. McCasland on April 13, 2003
Format: Paperback
You just don't get the feel of this extraordinary, unusual and unique play of Mary McCarthy and Lillian Hellman - two rival authors during the communist scare - from reading it. I was given the pleasure of seeing this incredible play starring Cherry Jones and Swoozie Kurts in its Broadway run. When the two authors meet in the afterlife, they tell their audience about their lives, beginning with their cleverly told childhoods and slowly moving forward to McCarthy's accusation of being a Communist and ending with Hellman's death before the trial was set by Hellman and McCarthy to discuss McCarthy's lies about Hellman's so-called memoirs. Still clever and still stunning, Ephron's play is an enjoyable read for McCarthy (THE GROUP) and Hellman (THE CHILDREN'S HOUR) fans.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Ann Cassin on March 28, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
i love anything written from Nora Ephron's point of view and this book provides some clues to how she got started. It is fun!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jean E. Slanger on January 4, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As an avid reader of the works of both Mary McCarthy and Lillian Hellman I found Nora Ephron's play not only witty and insightful but wickedly funny. I'd be happy to see it staged. I read it first to myself and later with a friend who liked it despite knowing next to nothing about the characters on whom it was based.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
What a clever and refreshing way to revisit two iconic writers: Lillian Hellman and Mary McCarthy. This sharp and digestible play imagines the two women having an extended interchange and even finding a sliver of common ground. Some of the devices that Ephron uses in the play would make for great staging today.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I LIKED THE IMAGINATIVE WAY OF DEALING WITH TWO WOMEN WHO WERE SO TALENTED, SO ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF THINGS IN A PUBLIC WAY, AND YET SO PERSONALLY AND DAMAGINGLY CONTEMPTUOUS.
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By Alicia Y Hernandez on February 25, 2013
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I am a Nora Ephron fan and loved all her work. This is just another to add to my
fan book experience of her's. I can't enough of her work.
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I think this play needs to be seen on stage. It requires really good actors and good staging to be viable.
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By Nikolas Wong on March 22, 2014
Format: Paperback
I enjoyed it. A fun read, just what I was looking for, something to explore. Keep up the good work!
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