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Sunday, November 20, 2016

365 Groovy Books Worth Reading #91 - 100

Today I continue my list of 365 Groovy Books Worth Reading (in random order). Click here for the previous 90 books - and click on a title for more information or to purchase a copy:

91) My Mother Was Nuts (2012) by Penny Marshall
The actress/director shares her life story in this entertaining memoir, which includes her roles on The Odd Couple and Laverne & Shirley and such memorable directing credits as Big, Awakenings and A League of Their Own.

92) I Blame Dennis Hopper: And Other Stories from a Life Lived In and Out of the Movies (2015) by Illeana Douglas
I've always enjoyed Ms. Douglas as an actress in such movies as Grief, To Die For and Grace of My Heart, and her amusing memoir is a fun read (the title refers to her parents’ decision to run a hippie commune after seeing Dennis Hopper in the film, Easy Rider).

93) Everything Was Possible: The Birth of the Musical "Follies" (2003) by Ted Chapin
In 1971, college student Chapin became a production assistant for the Broadway musical, Follies, and kept a journal of everything he saw and heard - and then 32 years later he turned his eyewitness account into this terrific book.

94) The Laments (2004) by George Hagen
The New York Times Book Review describes Hagen's debut novel as "a thrill ride: bleak, deep and hilarious...a family story on speed, with a jolt of black comedy that makes it a close relative to that greatest of all American family stories, The Simpsons."

95) Smash Cut: A Memoir of Howard & Art & the '70s & the '80s (2015) by Brad Gooch
Author Edmund White describes this love story about Gooch's relationship with Howard Brookner (1954-1989) as "so glamorous, so sexy, and so devastating" (Brookner directed and co-wrote the 1989 comedy, Bloodhounds of Broadway, starring Matt Dillon, Jennifer Grey and Madonna).

96) Son of Any Wednesday: The making of a Broadway hit (1965) by Muriel Resnik and photographs by Wallace Litwin
I loved reading this behind-the-scenes look at Resnik's 1964 Broadway hit, Any Wednesday, starring Sandy Dennis and Gene Hackman (it later became a 1966 film with Jane Fonda and Dean Jones).

97) Dangerously Funny: The Uncensored Story of The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour (2009) by David Bianculli
A behind-the-scenes look at the rise and fall of the 1967-69 CBS variety show, The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, which shocked the censors, outraged the White House, and forever changed the face of television.

98) The Irresistible Henry House (2010) by Lisa Grunwald
In 1946, an orphaned Henry House is used as a "practice baby" at a prominent university to teach mothering skills to young women. This engaging novel then follows Henry as he grows up and becomes an animator for the films, Mary Poppins and the Beatles' Yellow Submarine (Julie Andrews and John Lennon even make cameo appearances).

99) Super Aussie Soaps: Behind the Scenes of Australia's Best Loved TV Shows (2004) by Andrew Mercado
This definitive history of every Australian television serial from 1958 to 2004 includes Number 96, The Sullivans, Prisoner, Sons and Daughters, Neighbours and Home and Away. You can also learn which soaps featured Olivia Newton-John, Mel Gibson, Nicole Kidman, Heath Ledger, Russell Crowe, Kylie Minogue and Guy Pearce.

100) Easy Riders, Raging Bulls: How the Sex-Drugs-and-Rock 'n' Roll Generation Saved Hollywood (1998) by Peter Biskind
The cast of characters in Biskind's fascinating book about Hollywood filmmaking of the 1970s includes Robert Altman, Warren Beatty, Candice Bergen, Peter Bogdanovich, Ellen Burstyn, Julie Christie, Francis Coppola, Robert De Niro, Brian De Palma, Faye Dunaway, Margot Kidder, George Lucas, Mike Nichols, Jack Nicholson, Martin Scorsese, Cybill Shepherd and Steven Spielberg.

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