Then Again By Diane Keaton (amazon.com)
Warren Beatty thought Keaton should stop fooling around with collages. “You’re a movie star,” he said. “What is all this art stuff going to get you anyway?” But a collage is exactly what Keaton has created in this clever, tender, at times startling (a five-year bulimia habit!) and occasionally heartbreaking account of her life and that of her mother, Dorothy Keaton Hall, who died of Alzheimer’s in 2008. Throwing everything into the mix—journals (her mother filled 85), letters (Woody Allen signed his “Uncle Woodums”), lists (her mother’s affirmations, her own hypercharged to-dos)—Keaton pieces together a riveting picture of two women who were always stars in each other’s eyes. —AMANDA LOVELL
Blue Nights by Joan Didion (amazon.com)
Anyone who has grown up with Didion’s beautiful, elegiac prose, who has read her precise and sculptural sentences and absorbed her thoughts, knows the author’s own story. We know about her California roots, about Vogue and Malibu; we know (from The Year of Magical Thinking) about the awful losses of her husband, John Gregory Dunne, and her adored daughter, Quintana Roo, by whose absence she still measures her days. Blue Nights continues the steady carving of this narrative of memory, mourning and remem-bered joy. Part memoir, part meditation, it offers haunting glimpses into Didion’s rising awareness of her mortality and reminds us how her brilliant work illuminates our own lives. —ROXANA ROBINSON
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