Daughter. Sister. Mother. Wife. Writer. Feminist. Filmmaker. Icon. These are only a few of the words that describe Nora Ephron, the beloved individual known for her wit, honesty, and countless movie moments. Whether she was writing about true love, politicians, or Cosmopolitan, Nora just always seemed to get it, a friendly voice that reached out whenever we needed her most. Though she passed away in 2012, she left a hefty collection of work and inspired countless others. Here are some of our favorites in her canon, as well as other Nora-inspired titles to try.
Twenty-nine-year-old Sophie is toiling away as a criminal law associate when she’s charged with handling the intake interview for Mia Durkheim, who, after eighteen years of marriage, has been served divorce papers. Told entirely through emails, internal memos, and legal documents, THE DIVORCE PAPERS is a hilarious and heartbreaking novel.
The daughter of screenwriters, Nora grew up in Hollywood surrounded by impressive and intelligent party guests, whom she would greet in her pajamas. One of them was a legend in her own right and one of Nora’s literary forebears: Dorothy Parker. Brash, self-aware, and unafraid, Parker was known for her sense of humor and style of writing, where everything was fair game.
In this novel, Molly Hallberg is almost forty, a divorced writer living in New York who wants her own column when she’s assigned to write a piece “in the style of Nora Ephron” about romance in the Big Apple. As she works her way through Nora’s work, she learns that her city cynicism might just be what’s holding her back.
Lena Dunham’s first book of essays about life, love, and personal neuroses is dedicated to Nora, her mentor and friend, and the woman she says inspired her writing and film career. If anyone has come close to becoming the New Nora, it’s Dunham. Another must-read is her remembrance of Nora in The New Yorker.
Nora Ephron’s sister Delia is a bestselling writer herself, and her 2013 collection of autobiographical essays touch on similar themes of movies, family, life, love, and loss. The most heartwarming (and wrenching) is “Losing Nora,” where she captures the rivalry, respect, and intimate moments that made up her relationship with her sister from childhood to Nora’s death.
In the last few years of her life, Nora reclaimed her literary crown with this collection, which openly discussed what it meant to be a woman who was getting older and experiencing change. Through ups, downs, and unexpected truths, she kept us laughing.
Reading Nora: 9 Essential Books For Every Ephron Fan was originally published on POPSUGAR.