A two-time finalist for both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award, Diane Johnson has drawn comparisons to Jane Austen and Edith Wharton with her comedies of manners about Americans living and loving abroad.
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Paris, France, and San Francisco, California
Date of Birth:
April 28, 1934
Place of Birth:
B.A., University of Utah; M.A., Ph.D., UCLA, 1968
The Rosenthal Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters; The Los Angeles Times Seidenbaum Award
|Johnson's Latest Affair|
Upon its latest incarnation as a major motion picture starring Kate Hudson and Naomi Watts in the lead roles of two American sisters in Paris, Johnson's novel is also sure to spark a new honeymoon with readers. "What makes Diane Johnson such a rewarding novelist (and travel writer) is her vivid, can-the-bulls--t tone," said Salon. "She's a treat to read."
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|She'll Always Have Paris|
|In an interview with her publisher, Johnson reflected on the city she calls home -- and writes about. "The whole beauty of Paris, and its contrast with American cities, thrilled me very much," she explains. "I drew completely on my experience of living here -- for example, my love for the bus and the Métro, my realization that the car is a huge waste of time, the wonderful feeling of personal security that means women can come home alone late at night without concern, the rich texture of street life when people are out and about instead of locked in cars or suburban houses. The organ grinder is playing tunes under my window as I write this."|
|Johnson's Follow-Up||Johnson's Reading Recommendations|
Said The New York Post of Le Mariage, Johnson's witty second installment in what will eventually be a trilogy (L'Affaire is coming next), "Johnson juggles a clever plot and complex characters with both wit and soul."
|A Suitable Boy|
We asked Johnson to tell us about some of her of all-time favorite reads. She mentioned Vikram Seth's A Suitable Boy, noting, "it ought to be a wonderful luxury to take on a long, sandy vacation." Read on to learn more about Johnson's reading recommendations, including:
|Photo by Jan Cobb||