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The Most of Nora Ephron Hardcover – Deckle Edge, October 29, 2013

4.6 out of 5 stars 74 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This posthumous collection celebrates Ephron's talent for turning her experiences into material, no matter the medium. Organized by occupation (The Journalist, The Advocate, The Foodie, The Blogger, and others), the volume contains numerous classics: her novel Heartburn; the screenplay to When Harry Met Sally; and wry essays on aging that made her collections, I Feel Bad About My Neck and I Remember Nothing, bestsellers. Ephron's last work, Lucky Guy, a play about the career of New York tabloid journalist Mike McAlary, is published here for the first time. The book's most delicious offering is Ephron's magazine journalism from the 1970s, with razor-sharp profiles of figures such as Helen Gurley Brown, Dorothy Schiff, and Julie Nixon Eisenhower, and keenly intelligent reportage on subjects that include the 1971 National Women's Political Caucus and the 1973 Pillsbury Bake-off competition. From Ephron's days as a reporter at Newsweek in the 1960s to blogging for the Huffington Post in the 2000s, the book documents the changing culture of the New York media world. Everything is copy, Ephron's mother always said. This collection fulfills that motto with aplomb, and will likely serve as a perfect holiday gift for Ephron fans. Agent: Amanda Urban, ICM. (Nov.)

From Booklist

Nora Ephron (1941–2012) was an exceptionally smart, funny, and caring journalist, essayist, novelist, playwright, screenwriter, blogger, producer, and director. Her last two books, I Remember Nothing and Other Reflections (2010) and I Feel Bad about My Neck (2006), were best-sellers; her films include Silkwood, Sleepless in Seattle, You’ve Got Mail, and Julie & Julia. No matter how versed in Ephron’s cherished work a reader may be, she or he will be dazzled and touched anew by this life-spanning, life-embracing collection that so richly showcases her clarity, brio, and candor. Mining her own intriguing life in Beverly Hills and New York, Ephron wrote about what it means to be female, from her hilarious “A Few Words about Breasts” in 1972 to her touched-a-nerve laments about marriage, motherhood, age, and persistent sexism. A canny interpreter of the zeitgeist, Ephron threshed topics social, cultural, and political, and shared her passion for food. Nearly 80 stellar essays are accompanied by Ephron’s novel, Heartburn; her play, Lucky Guy, and her acclaimed, oft-quoted screenplay for When Harry Met Sally. A tonic and essential celebration of a scintillating and mighty writer. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Ephron’s bereft readership will embrace this robust, strongly promoted tribute to her incandescent talent and intensely creative life. --Donna Seaman
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 576 pages
  • Publisher: Knopf; First Edition edition (October 29, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 038535083X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385350839
  • Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 1.7 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (74 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #25,918 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I have to admit a few things before I give my opinion of this book. First of all, I never really knew anything about Nora Ephron, including the fact that I never saw her movie or read her book. Also, I received this book free by winning a First Reads contest. Now that it is all out in the open, I absolutely loved everything about this book. This was one incredible woman.It is almost as if everything that she touched in her career turned to gold. Of course, you can't say the same about her private life, but still, this lady was truly hard to not like. Her screenplay for "When Harry Met Sally" and her book "Heartburn" were so easy to become entralled in. I couldn't put this book down, and it still took quite a while to read, because it is a huge book. If you can read this book through without laughing out loud a few times and comparing something in Nora's life to your own, you're just not normal.
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Format: Hardcover
Her friend, the editor Robert Gottlieb, says it well in his introduction: Nora Ephron, who died last year at age 71, was “a reporter, a profilist, a polemicist, a novelist, a screenwriter, a playwright, a memoirist, and a (wicked) blogger.” She was also a good cook, apparently, and the writer-director of some of the more charming romantic comedies of the past 20 years. The nice thing about books such as THE MOST OF NORA EPHRON, a 550-page collection of her writing, is that they serve two purposes. They’re candy for people who like the author, and they’re a good introduction for the uninitiated. Fans as well as those unfamiliar with Ephron’s work will find much to enjoy here.

The book is divided into nine categories, each one devoted either to subjects Ephron wrote about or the many literary forms for which she became famous. As she tells us in “Journalism: A Love Story,” Beverly Hills native Ephron began her career in 1962 when, having just received a degree in political science from Wellesley, she got a job in Newsweek’s mailroom. She soon worked her way up (if up is the right word) to clipper, in which she “ripped up the country’s newspapers and routed the clips to the relevant departments,” and then to researcher, which she says was a fancy term for a fact-checker. She eventually went on to write for other publications, including Esquire and New York magazines and the New York Post, the last of which had offices so dirty that someone once wrote “Philthy” in the thick dust that had collected on a window.

In her two decades as a journalist, Ephron perfected the hilariously caustic style that would make her famous. In “The Palm Beach Social Pictorial,” an Esquire piece from 1975, she tells us about a periodical written by and for the wealthy women of Palm Beach, Florida.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Doesn't much matter which of those 557 pages fall open. Wherever you land you should find a good read. Here's a sampling: There's Nora, the thrice married New Yorker daughter of Hollywood screenwriters. Nora of 1960's Newsweek, when the only jobs open to women were in the mailroom. Nora, the New York Post journalist, novelist, filmmaker and playwright. Nora sitting around with Rob Reiner dithering with improving the script of "When Harry Met Sally." Nora settling scores with her unfaithful second husband in "Heartburn," the book that became a Meryl Streep movie. Nora as writer/director of "You've Got Mail" and "Sleepless in Seattle." Nora, the foodie, on having people to dinner and life in the land of the egg-white omelette. And the Nora who knew early on who Deep Throat was, but nobody believed her. Nora and her profiles of Helen Gurley Brown, Julie Nixon Eisenhower and other well known women. Nora on life in the Google years. Nora on the "O" word and remembering nothing. Nora's script of "Lucky Guy," her 2-act play that ran on Broadway, starring Tom Hanks, in 2013. Nora's "Story of My Life in 3,500 Words or Less" and two one-page lists of "What I Won't Miss" and "What I Will Miss." Nora Ephron died of leukemia at 71 in June, 2012.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Nora Ephron is funny. Because she seeks the truth, after I've stopped laughing, I find myself oddly, deeply affected and a bit teared up. She left us too soon, so I'm glad I got this great, big fat compendium of her work from the many facets of her life--newspaper and magazine journalist, epic foodie, novelist, screenwriter, playwright. Somehow her love of eating and cooking works its way into a lot of what she's written as a novelist, screenwriter, and journalist. Her confiding tone makes her feel like a girlfriend, someone I stay in touch with long after moving on from the school or job where we first met.

The Most of Nora Ephron gives me the opportunity to revisit Ephron's wit and warmth again and again.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This splendid collection of Nora Ephron's work should be read by every woman in America, and MOST men. Readers are not meant to read it straight through, but sample it as one would a box of chocolates. However, I read it over my Christmas vacation in one fell swoop, hating to put it down. Nora Ephron's death brought out a spasm of national mourning, and reading her work again, one can see why. She is often compared to Dorothy Parker, but it's a false analogy. Parker was cold at the heart; Ephron was warm and human all the way through. Read this!
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