April 29, 2015

Candice Bergen's Fine Romance...

I have been a fan of Emmy winner Candice Bergen since her iconic Murphy Brown days, and loved her first autobiography Knock Wood in the 80s, so was all geared up for her new one, A Fine Romance.

This book did not disappoint - I read it cover to cover (okay, screen to screen) in a day on our recent vacation. A Fine Romance, like its author, is smart and funny and brutally honest, and can be dishy and insider-y without being mean or trashy.

A Fine Romance starts with Bergen in her 30s, when she met and married the much older French director Louis Malle, up to the present day, through her unusual international marriage, films like Gandhi, the high profile Murphy Brown years, the birth of her only child, Malle's death, her remarriage, plastic surgery, life in Hollywood, aging, and more, with total candour and great wit.

The book is smart and honest and funny, and despite her WASP queen looks, Hollywood and Swiss boarding school upbringing, money and fame, Bergen comes across like a real live person with typical guilt, embarrassment, loves, hopes, and disappointments.

Bergen, who made headlines recently for admitting she's gained weight because she loves to eat, describes with humour her perpetual surprise at the indignities aging slings at us. She writes of being stranded atop a bike after a spinning class when she couldn't figure out how to unlock from the pedals; of her post-age-60 hair, "which seems to be somebody else's hair: I think Golda Meir's"; and about her mouth "which has grown so thin it cannot be found by the naked eye."

This big will be on lots of year-end "best" lists... catch it before then!