web
counter

serial podcast / the walking dead / snl / mindhole blowers / netflix / celebrity facts / marvel


Cannonball Read V: Crazy Salad by Nora Ephron

By sonk | Book Reviews | November 6, 2013 | Comments ()


crazysaladcover.jpg

(Congratulations to sonk, who joins 18 or so Cannonballers who have reached or exceeded 52 reviews so far this year. Want in? Follow us on Facebook or Twitter for details about Cannonball Read VI. —mswas)

And just like that-I’ve completed my Cannonball Read 5!!!! And two months ahead of schedule, to boot. 52 books in 10 months; that ain’t too shabby. I’ll still be reading/reviewing until December 31st, though, just to see how many books I can finish before then.

This is a fitting book to complete my goal with, because Nora Ephron is something of a personal hero of mine. She’s witty and smart and a brilliant writer, and if I were going to pick a person to emulate, it would probably be her. This was actually the first full book of hers that I’ve read (well, it’s actually a collection of pieces), but I loved it and absolutely plan on reading more. As a note: I believe that the edition I read is out of print but has been republished in a single volume with Scribble, Scribble. There is a version of Crazy Salad out there with an introduction by Steve Martin, but that is not the original, as it cuts out a few of the pieces.

Crazy Salad is a compilation of pieces written by Ephron for Esquire magazine in the 1970s, all of them dealing with, in one way or another, women. Ephron was an outspoken feminist with a wicked sense of humor, and so most of these columns are as entertaining as they are informative. She covers a huge range of topics, from Linda Lovelace and Deepthroat to the Pillsbury Bake-Off to meditations on breasts to reflections on the women associated with Nixon and the Watergate scandal (and many, many other things). Some of the pieces are more traditionally journalistic and others are just variations on the personal essay, and this variety just serves to highlight Ephron’s skill as a writer.

This collection was a bit uneven, I have to admit. There were some absolutely killer pieces in here-the aforementioned piece on breasts was the clear standout, but I also really enjoyed pieces on feminine hygiene products and the conflicts between the major players of the feminist movement (I had no idea that Betty Friedan and Gloria Steinem hated each other), among others. Overall, the pieces were very strong, but there were definitely a few weak links that I had to kind of skim through because they just weren’t engaging enough. I typically found those to be the ones where Ephron tried to be a bit more serious and objective-I think she’s most successful when she’s letting herself express her opinions freely and taking hilarious jabs at the bizarreness and superficiality of the world she lives in.

If you’re new to Ephron, this is as good a place as any to start (and it’s a great way to separate Ephron the screenwriter from Ephron the columnist-she was a very diverse and talented writer beyond scripts for admittedly great romantic comedies!). I definitely recommend checking this out or, at the very least, tracking down “A Few Words About Breasts,” because it’s just so, so good.

This review is part of the volunteer Cannonball Read V. Read all about it, and for more of sonk’s reviews, check out Sonya’s Cannonball Read.

(Note: Any revenue generated from purchases made through the amazon.com affiliate links
in this this review will be donated in entirety to the American Cancer Society.)


You Thought The Non-White Spider-Man Kicked Up The Racists? Wait Until You Meet The Muslim Ms. Marvel. | In the Super Cute Zachary Levi and Tom Hiddleston Dance Off, We All Win


Are you following Pajiba on Facebook or Twitter? Every time you do, Bill Murray crashes a wedding.


Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not


  • Mrs. Julien

    Congratulations, sonk! 52 is a lot.

    Also, there are only "18 or so" who have completed the full Cannonball? Really? Out of how many?

    ANSWER ME, MSWAS! I know you're lurking, sending positive vibes, and sacrificing chickens hoping to appease the God of Internet Commentary.

  • Sonk

    Thanks :-)

  • mswas

    DON'T MAKE ME GET OUT MY SPREADSHEET!

  • mswas

    19 out of 160 people who have posted at least one review have reached 52 or more. We had 330 sign up.

  • Mrs. Julien

    That's a lot of pikers.

  • mswas

    I know. Hopefully the sign up process for CBR6 (!) will simplify the process, so that won't be a part of the issue.

  • Sonk

    Yay for CBR6! I can't wait.

blog comments powered by Disqus