"We borrowed each other's lines like other sisters borrowed dresses,'' writes Delia Ephron in her memoir, Sister Mother Husband Dog (etc.). The book, which was released in September, includes both heartbreaking essays, like "Losing Nora,'' which concerns the death of older sister Nora Ephron, as well as hilarious stories about dogs, good hair days and how the author accidentally converted to Christianity — twice.
Delia Ephron, 69, a novelist and screenwriter whose works include The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, You've Got Mail and Hanging Up, recently spoke to us via phone from her New York apartment while her dog, Honey, wreaked some sort of havoc in the background.
What's on your nightstand?
American Mirror: The Life and Art of Norman Rockwell by Deborah Solomon.
Do you recommend it?
It is an absolutely great book. I would be further into it, but I was getting a hair blowout at a salon last week, and I left it there. I just think Norman Rockwell's life is extraordinary. He was completely intense. I was impressed with the writer's engaging style. There was something very original about it. The interesting thing about Norman Rockwell is that, as funny as it sounds, when you think about the artist who did all those covers for the Saturday Evening Post, he was not a totally pleasant guy. I enjoy biographies that are engaging like this one was.
Actually, there's another biography that comes to mind, Capote by Gerald Clark. The writer had a very conversational style that I admired and he really understood Truman Capote. Just like with Norman Rockwell, Capote was really brought to life. I mean Norman Rockwell wasn't a barrel of fun and Truman Capote was complete fun, but in the end, Capote did everyone in. In the book, you understand that, but you get to understanding the psychology of it, and you become sympathetic.
Times staff writer Piper Castillo can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.