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Dorothy Parker: What Fresh Hell Is This?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 10, 1999

    Oh, thank you Mr. Updike.

    I'm so enthusiastic about the vicious Ms. Parker I want to be her! That's why reading John Updike's review made me so happy. I ploughed through Meade's bio in 2 days and was ultimately overwhelmed by the implicit tone of disdain for her subject. Dorothy's alcoholism and acerbic nature are too often shown as leading to nothing but loneliness and degradation. Sometimes it seems as if Marion Meade is determined to catalogue every single highball Dorothy ever drank. If you read Parker's own writings, you'll find her gloomy and fierce wit evidence of a much more inspiring life. She was funny in describing her own sad nature, and fearless in ridiculing the absurdity of her world.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 18, 2005

    Interesting

    Since Dorothy didn't leave journals to go by, Meade has gone back in time and interviewed those still around in order to piece together a comprehensive story of the life of the great wit Dorothy Parker. Born into wealth, the story of her life can be seen as both trimuph and tragedy. I've admired Dorothy's work ever since freshman year in high school where we read 'observation'. I already had collected her complete stories and complete poems, but this book was a must-have for me as a fan. At some points in the story of her life, I was drawing very similar parallels with my own, reinforcing the connection to her writing and spirit I had previously felt. It was interesting to look behind the wit to see the woman who dared to go toe-to-toe with the men of the 1920s and 1930s to shine like the star that she was. Sadly, she died without ever feeling that she was successful. Kudos to Meade for making her story known in a way I think that presents Parker fairly.

    1 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 27, 2003

    An enlightening read

    I was excited to find this book. After reading so much of Parker's poetry I felt the need to know more about the woman who wrote it. Though I enjoyed the book and its comprehensive look at Parker's life, at times it felt more like a PR for her bartender. It did explain for me what I've always questioned about her black humor; which is why such a seemingly depressed woman could write poetry with an underlying feeling of a happier life.

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted June 13, 2012

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    Posted February 1, 2011

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