Garbo Laughs

Front Cover
Harriet Browning was deprived of movies as a child. When the chance comes, she begins to make up for lost time in a big way. Set in Ottawa in the 1990s, this funny and sad-eyed tale tells of a girl who becomes infatuated with the movies. Equally addicted are her three boon companions: a boy who loves Frank Sinatra, a girl with Bette Davis eyes and an earthy sidekick named after Dinah Shore. Breaking in upon the quiet backwater where the four friends live, amid the devastating ice storm of 1998, come two refugees from Hollywood, the jaded widow of a famous screenwriter and her movie-expert stepson. The pair are the embodiment of harsh reality. And in their wake come blackouts, arguments, accidents, illness and sudden death. What hope does real love have when movie love, in all its brief intensity, is so much the more attractive option? This brilliant and poignant novel, from the award-winning Canadian writer, Elizabeth Hay, is a seductive comedy of secondhand desire, the lure of the movies and the pleasure and pain of all movie lovers in thrall to the best of life's distractions.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - RandyMetcalfe - LibraryThing

Elizabeth Hay introduces her novel with an epigraph from legendary film critic, Pauline Kael: “We will never know the extent of the damage that movies are doing to us.” That brilliantly sets the ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - chicapeligrosa - LibraryThing

I did enjoy the story very much but found the flipping around from one POV to the next a bit confusing at first (especially without any significant separation in the text). Sometimes it wasn't clear ... Read full review

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About the author (2004)

Elizabeth Hay was born in Owen Sound, Ontario on October 22, 1951. She attended Victoria College, University of Toronto. She worked for Canadian Broadcasting Corporation radio for ten years as a host, interviewer, and documentary maker. She has written several books including Small Change, A Student of Weather, Garbo Laughs, and The Only Snow in Havana. She won the 2007 Scotiabank Giller Prize for Late Nights on Air. In 2002, she received the Marian Engel Award for her body of work, which includes novels, short fiction, and creative non-fiction.

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