From the award-winning author of A Student of Weather, a funny, sad-eyed novel about a woman caught between real love and movie love--and real love doesn't stand a chance. This is a novel about movie love. Set in Ottawa in the 1990s, it is the quixotic tale of tall, thin Harriet Browning, inflamed by the movies she was deprived of as a child. Bent on seeing everything she has missed, she rapidly becomes so saturated with old movies, seen repeatedly and swallowed whole, that she no longer fits into this world. Equally addicted are her three companions- of-the-screen: a boy who loves Frank Sinatra, a girl with Bette Davis eyes, and an earthy sidekick named after Dinah Shore. Breaking in upon this quiet backwater, in time with the devastating ice storm of 1998, come two refugees from Hollywood, the jaded widow of a famous screenwriter and her movie-expert stepson. They are Harsh Reality. With them come blackouts, arguments, accidents, illness, and sudden death. But what chance does real life stand when we can watch movies instead? What hope does real love have when movie love, in all its brief intensity, is an easy option? In this brilliant and poignant comedy of secondhand desire, m
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Lew said , “ Hattie writes to Pauline Kael . ” “ You know ... Does she write back ?
... She was a writer who wasn ' t really writing except for the letters , except for this
ongoing , one - sided intimacy that she didn ' t have to justify to anyone .
Journalists write less than they know and novelists write more , he told Harriet
when he learned she was a writer . A journalist will know the premier has a
mistress kept in a hotel at government expense while his battered wife regularly
She had her daughter with her when she came to us . That was after Twentieth
Century - Fox took her and McCall ' s magazine to task for panning West Side
Story , and she was fired by McCall ' s and didn ' t write about movies for a year .
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LibraryThing ReviewUser 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 ReviewUser Review - ParadisePorch - LibraryThing
Not about Garbo, but vintage b&w films play a part. Hay always delivers a good story filled with human insights and poignancy Read full review