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Drinking with Dead Women Writers

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"A rare mix of cleverness and intellect, and a total blast to read." -Alan Heathcock, award winning author of VOLT. "Engaging and revealing, but most of all, flat out funny." -Flashlight Commentary Essays on drinking with Dorothy Parker, Louisa May Alcott, Jane Austen, Erma Bombeck, The Bronte Sisters, Willa Cather, Emily Dickinson, George Eliot, Margaret Mead, Edna St. Vinc "A rare mix of cleverness and intellect, and a total blast to read." -Alan Heathcock, award winning author of VOLT. "Engaging and revealing, but most of all, flat out funny." -Flashlight Commentary Essays on drinking with Dorothy Parker, Louisa May Alcott, Jane Austen, Erma Bombeck, The Bronte Sisters, Willa Cather, Emily Dickinson, George Eliot, Margaret Mead, Edna St. Vincent Millay, Margaret Mitchell, Carson McCullers, Flannery O'Connor, Sylvia Plath, Ayn Rand and Virginia Woolf. Facts about Dead Women Writers: Most early female writers used pen names because women weren't regarded as competent writers. Margaret Mitchell wrote only one published novel in her lifetime, but Gone with the Wind won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1937 and sold more than 30 million copies. Emily Dickinson was so paranoid that she only spoke to people from behind a door. Carson McCullers wrote The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter at age 22. Her husband wanted them to commit suicide in the French countryside, but she refused. Ambrose and Turner explore these and other intriguing facts about the most famous (but departed) women in literary history.


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"A rare mix of cleverness and intellect, and a total blast to read." -Alan Heathcock, award winning author of VOLT. "Engaging and revealing, but most of all, flat out funny." -Flashlight Commentary Essays on drinking with Dorothy Parker, Louisa May Alcott, Jane Austen, Erma Bombeck, The Bronte Sisters, Willa Cather, Emily Dickinson, George Eliot, Margaret Mead, Edna St. Vinc "A rare mix of cleverness and intellect, and a total blast to read." -Alan Heathcock, award winning author of VOLT. "Engaging and revealing, but most of all, flat out funny." -Flashlight Commentary Essays on drinking with Dorothy Parker, Louisa May Alcott, Jane Austen, Erma Bombeck, The Bronte Sisters, Willa Cather, Emily Dickinson, George Eliot, Margaret Mead, Edna St. Vincent Millay, Margaret Mitchell, Carson McCullers, Flannery O'Connor, Sylvia Plath, Ayn Rand and Virginia Woolf. Facts about Dead Women Writers: Most early female writers used pen names because women weren't regarded as competent writers. Margaret Mitchell wrote only one published novel in her lifetime, but Gone with the Wind won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1937 and sold more than 30 million copies. Emily Dickinson was so paranoid that she only spoke to people from behind a door. Carson McCullers wrote The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter at age 22. Her husband wanted them to commit suicide in the French countryside, but she refused. Ambrose and Turner explore these and other intriguing facts about the most famous (but departed) women in literary history.

30 review for Drinking with Dead Women Writers

  1. 4 out of 5

    Teri Zipf

    You'd get a lot more information if you looked up the writer in Wikipedia, but if you want to read a few paragraphs about a few writers, it's all right. Just don't expect to get any insight. The premise offers that hope, but really, you can tell that the living writers banged it together just as quickly as they said they would in the preface. You'd get a lot more information if you looked up the writer in Wikipedia, but if you want to read a few paragraphs about a few writers, it's all right. Just don't expect to get any insight. The premise offers that hope, but really, you can tell that the living writers banged it together just as quickly as they said they would in the preface.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Lynne

    4 stars for the concept, 3 for the execution thereof. So many times I'd read about a favorite female author's life and think, "this is a broad I'd love to have coffee with." Ambrose and Turner go one further, choosing a favorite libation and sharing it with a notable female author back from the dead. AK Turner's chapters felt more "natural" than Elaine Ambrose's. Ambrose sort of stitched together some of the author's famous quotes, while Turner tried harder to synthesize them and make them feel m 4 stars for the concept, 3 for the execution thereof. So many times I'd read about a favorite female author's life and think, "this is a broad I'd love to have coffee with." Ambrose and Turner go one further, choosing a favorite libation and sharing it with a notable female author back from the dead. AK Turner's chapters felt more "natural" than Elaine Ambrose's. Ambrose sort of stitched together some of the author's famous quotes, while Turner tried harder to synthesize them and make them feel more like actual conversation. Also: Some inaccuracies in the interviews made me wonder if these women actually knew their authors or the books they cite. "Laurie" in Alcott's Little Women is referred to as a girl in Ambrose's interview with the author. Also: Scarlett O'Hara had three children, not just one, so it's much more obvious that Ambrose saw the movie than that she actually read the book. And the real Margaret Mitchell would have straightened her out on that point. Overall, an enjoyable, fun, quick read, and one I'd recommend despite the problems with editing and voice.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Richard

    I thought this was such a good idea for a book, a nice spin on the Ideal Dinner Guest game. In places its done well, Plath, Woolfe, Parker and Dickinson are probably the stand out chapters. However due to the book's premise the chapters can feel a bit formulaic (it may be better to just read 1 or 2 at a time) and some read as if the authors weren't sure whether they were writing a creative short story, interview or fact sheet. Sadly this means that at times it fails to be any of the three. The ch I thought this was such a good idea for a book, a nice spin on the Ideal Dinner Guest game. In places its done well, Plath, Woolfe, Parker and Dickinson are probably the stand out chapters. However due to the book's premise the chapters can feel a bit formulaic (it may be better to just read 1 or 2 at a time) and some read as if the authors weren't sure whether they were writing a creative short story, interview or fact sheet. Sadly this means that at times it fails to be any of the three. The chapters don't go into much depth with the authors works and lives but are written with a certain amount of wit and have tempted me to check out some of the writers I haven't come across previously. Based on that fact I'd have to say the book is a success and was well worth reading but I'm left with the niggling feeling of disappointment that it wasn't done better.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Toni Kief

    This is the most charming gift of a book, I want to share it with all of the women writers I know. Clever, funny, and makes me want to go meet the authors for drinks too. My only wish would be to make it longer. Loved this book and it is #1 for this year.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Historical Fiction

    Find the enhanced version of this and other reviews at: http://flashlightcommentary.blogspot.... Some of you may know that I am addicted to kindle freebies. I’m ashamed to say my digital library is flooded with titles I’ve downloaded at no charge. Thing is, I’ve found that most of these books are decent at best. I try to review them, give my honest feedback and all but I’ve made it a sort of personal mission to find something worth recommending. Usually, I come up short and occasionally I have to Find the enhanced version of this and other reviews at: http://flashlightcommentary.blogspot.... Some of you may know that I am addicted to kindle freebies. I’m ashamed to say my digital library is flooded with titles I’ve downloaded at no charge. Thing is, I’ve found that most of these books are decent at best. I try to review them, give my honest feedback and all but I’ve made it a sort of personal mission to find something worth recommending. Usually, I come up short and occasionally I have to concede defeat but I have found reason to hope. Ambrose and Turner’s Drinking with Dead Women Writers is amusing, creative and, in my opinion, worth the 2.99 it is now going for on Amazon. In a nutshell, the book is a compiled set of mock interviews between the Ambrose, Turner and some of the most well-known literary women of the underworld. Chapters are short, a few pages each but distinctive. I had worried Ambrose and Turner would run out of steam but this wasn’t the case. I was as tickled by Margaret Mead as I was Ayn Rand. Dorothy Parker and Erma Bombeck literally had me giggling through my lunch break. Giggling I tell you! Really my only quibble is the final line of Ambrose’s sit down with Margaret Mitchell. Rather than channel her own work into her dialogue as do our other interviewees, the deceased opted to advertise her appreciation for artistic license and screen legend Clark Gable. It’s funny really; I never would have thought the author would prefer the film adaptation to her own work. Go figure. Engaging and revealing, but most of all, flat out funny. Will definitely be on the lookout for the next installment, Drinking with Dead Drunks, this fall.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Annabel Joseph

    This was an interesting little read. My mom sent me the link to it when it was a free download, since I'm a woman writer. I was kind of like, "dead women writers", hmm, what is she trying to tell me? But it turns out the "dead writers" part was their little hook...they meet each of these trailblazing (but now dead) women writers in bars around the world and get wasted while talking to them about their lives. I was turned off at first because I dislike alcohol and bars and hate inebriation, but e This was an interesting little read. My mom sent me the link to it when it was a free download, since I'm a woman writer. I was kind of like, "dead women writers", hmm, what is she trying to tell me? But it turns out the "dead writers" part was their little hook...they meet each of these trailblazing (but now dead) women writers in bars around the world and get wasted while talking to them about their lives. I was turned off at first because I dislike alcohol and bars and hate inebriation, but each small snippet had a few really nicely turned lines and its own author-based theme. (For instance, the one with Dorothy Parker had a very flirty tone, while the one with Carson McCullers was almost hilariously downbeat.) I think what the authors were trying to do here wasn't so much inform, as to give people enough of a tease to find out more on their own. It definitely left me wishing to do more of my own research on each of these "dead women" authors. My guess is that when I learn more, each of the various vignettes will seem more meaningful. So all in all, this was a neat little project that that will encourage readers to seek more info, and even better, read some of these writers' work. Each vignette is admirably crafted and at times very sad or funny, and this whole book can be read in an hour or so. If you want to learn more about some of the great women authors who came before us, definitely give this a try.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Doris

    This sounded like an intriguing premise: imagined conversations with dead women writers over drinks. Unfortunately, the execution is weak. The contributions of the writers mostly seem to amount to quotations from their work, while the authors's contributions are mainly showing off what they know about the authors's lives. After a while, these essays all start to sound the same. This would probably work better as a website. This sounded like an intriguing premise: imagined conversations with dead women writers over drinks. Unfortunately, the execution is weak. The contributions of the writers mostly seem to amount to quotations from their work, while the authors's contributions are mainly showing off what they know about the authors's lives. After a while, these essays all start to sound the same. This would probably work better as a website.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Emily Rabecca

    I absolutely loved this book!! anyone who loves Emily Dickinson or Jane Austen or even Dorothy Parker will definitely appreciate this book!

  9. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    Funny and well written. In this book the two authors imagine a conversation with some of their favorite dead female authors. Of course, the "meeting" is accompanied with plenty of alcohol and sass, from both the living author and the dead one. It was a short but most excellent read. A thoroughly enjoyable way to spend a cold wintry afternoon. I highly recommend this book. Funny and well written. In this book the two authors imagine a conversation with some of their favorite dead female authors. Of course, the "meeting" is accompanied with plenty of alcohol and sass, from both the living author and the dead one. It was a short but most excellent read. A thoroughly enjoyable way to spend a cold wintry afternoon. I highly recommend this book.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    I loved the idea behind this book! In fact, I could kick myself for not coming up with the idea years ago :/ I wish each section would have been a little longer and I wish some of the characters would have been more lively (for lack of a better word). My favorite sections were on Sylvia Plath and Emily Dickinson with Margaret Mitchell definitely topping the list. My favorites may be simply because these are some of my favorite dead women writers, I'm not sure. I did like Plath's reaction to lear I loved the idea behind this book! In fact, I could kick myself for not coming up with the idea years ago :/ I wish each section would have been a little longer and I wish some of the characters would have been more lively (for lack of a better word). My favorite sections were on Sylvia Plath and Emily Dickinson with Margaret Mitchell definitely topping the list. My favorites may be simply because these are some of my favorite dead women writers, I'm not sure. I did like Plath's reaction to learning Ted's second wife also committed suicide, it seemed to fit well with the poet who's work I so admire. I was a little disappointed with Ayn Rand's drunken evening, but perhaps I would be just as disappointed spending an evening with Ayn Rand and not the ideal I have of her in my head....thinking about it, that is most likely the case. Favorite Quotes: From the section on Margaret Mead: The answer can be simplified to bathrooms. Until the 1960s, our homes had one bathroom, and families worked out the logistics. Modern homes with two or more bathrooms have ruined the capacity to cooperate. If we aren't compelled to negotiate in the home, how do we learn to work within society?" From the section on Willa Cather (whom I did not know and now must read): "your work is like a ghost knocking about in your head. It may haunt you continuously or lurk back in the shadows of your mind for decades, but that's what it is, a ghost." From the section on George Elliot (another must read): "The golden moments in the stream of life rush past us and we see nothing but sand; the angels come to visit us, and we only know them when they are gone...." From the section on Edna St. Vincent (love btw): "You see, I am a poet, and not quite right in the head, darling. It's only that." From the section on Ayn Rand: "Whatever you do, stay loyal to the achievement of your values."

  11. 5 out of 5

    Christine

    There is always a risk when a writer uses a real person or a beloved literary character in a book outside of straight forward historical fiction – the historical fiction that follows the basic outline. There is a Jane Austen who solves mysteries among other famous people who do the same. There is always a risk that a reader will get upset that the person (or character) has been perverted or changed too radically – like say making Charlotte Bronte the killer of her entire family. Then there are b There is always a risk when a writer uses a real person or a beloved literary character in a book outside of straight forward historical fiction – the historical fiction that follows the basic outline. There is a Jane Austen who solves mysteries among other famous people who do the same. There is always a risk that a reader will get upset that the person (or character) has been perverted or changed too radically – like say making Charlotte Bronte the killer of her entire family. Then there are books like this one. This book made me raise an eyebrow, but since it was being offered free, I thought might as well, though I didn’t have high hopes for it. Yet, I found myself being pleasantly surprised. The conceit is interesting, each chapter, written by one of the authors, is the author meeting a famous (dead) writer for drinks (or in the case of the Brontes, three writers). The nice thing is that it works. There is a large amount of history in the interviews, and while it is impossible to say if the writers nail the “characters” of the famous women, the caricatures are very funny and very poignant in some cases. Look at it this way, the Plath chapter was really good and considering it is about Plath that’s saying something. While the book might not have new facts for those well versed in the background of the writers “interviewed”, the writing is good and the humor makes up for the already know information. If you are new to the writers being interviewed, both in terms of their work or lives, the chapters do have information and there is a reading list for each author at the end of the book. The writers seem to do a good job of raising interest in the women and encouraging further reading.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Ana

    WOW..after reading this collection of short stories I'm truly grateful for two things: 1. I got this is a freebie, so thank God I didn't spend my hard earned money on something I didn't like. 2. it's really short! Now don't get me wrong, I don't mean to sound harsh, and I do appreciate these authors and their attempt to create an unique collection, because talking to authors who are dead over a glass of wine does sound cool. And that's the only reason why I gave this one a fair chance, the blurb sou WOW..after reading this collection of short stories I'm truly grateful for two things: 1. I got this is a freebie, so thank God I didn't spend my hard earned money on something I didn't like. 2. it's really short! Now don't get me wrong, I don't mean to sound harsh, and I do appreciate these authors and their attempt to create an unique collection, because talking to authors who are dead over a glass of wine does sound cool. And that's the only reason why I gave this one a fair chance, the blurb sounded interesting and once again I read the other reviews before reading the book (I really should stop doing this) and saw all these 4 and 5 stars ratings, so i said..AWESOME, I really need to read this! Well, unfortunately it didn't work according to that plan and yeah, I'm a bit disappointed. All of these stories seemed a LOT similar to one another, just short chit-chat over a glass. And it could be me..but honestly guys, I didn't find this book funny at all, and I saw many have it shelved as humor (another note to myself: stop looking at the shelves!!!) Overall, it was not my cup of tea, yet I gave it a fair chance. That's ok too...I guess.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Maureen Reil

    The idea of this book was good. As in, what would you say to these famous, dead women writers if you got the chance to meet up with them for a drink. And firstly, what beverage would they choose and secondly, what would they be like to converse with. The episodes were short and sweet and introduced me to some ladies, which I didn't know a lot about. So it was nice to be educated on their work and what passion it took to achieve this level of success, often in times when women were not given the The idea of this book was good. As in, what would you say to these famous, dead women writers if you got the chance to meet up with them for a drink. And firstly, what beverage would they choose and secondly, what would they be like to converse with. The episodes were short and sweet and introduced me to some ladies, which I didn't know a lot about. So it was nice to be educated on their work and what passion it took to achieve this level of success, often in times when women were not given the same respect simply because they were born female and not male. I particularly liked some of the witty one-liners and the glimpses into their past lives with their individual personalities shining through and of course, I had my favorites. I thought this definitely brought about an incentive to find out more and I would read the follow up book. I would also recommend this one to anyone who's interested in the subject matter, as it's a kind of 'dip into' type of book and you don't have to read it all at once.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Shannon McGee

    Two authors take turns writing short stories about different famous women authors who have passed on to the other side. The living author imagines what the conversation ,at a bar with wine, would sound like. They pretend to interview Louisa May Alcott, Margaret Mitchell, Jane Austen, Ann Rynd, and many more. The idea of having a conversation with a favorite who is dead has potential. Unfortunately each story sounds the same as the last. Each story they drink wine, the deceased author hope that he Two authors take turns writing short stories about different famous women authors who have passed on to the other side. The living author imagines what the conversation ,at a bar with wine, would sound like. They pretend to interview Louisa May Alcott, Margaret Mitchell, Jane Austen, Ann Rynd, and many more. The idea of having a conversation with a favorite who is dead has potential. Unfortunately each story sounds the same as the last. Each story they drink wine, the deceased author hope that her family got rid of the letter she wrote, and ends after the deceased author is done complaining. I feel the living authors could have explored so much more, maybe about the world now, or ask how being dead was treating them.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Michaela

    I've always loved to read, but recently, I've challenged myself to read more of the "classics," especially those that focus on the journeys and struggles of women. I didn't know where to start, and this book gave me a feel for what I should be looking for while providing me with a grasp of various influential authors' works and interesting personalities. I never felt bored or overwhelmed because each chapter was only a few pages long and dealt with one (except in the case of the Bronte sisters) I've always loved to read, but recently, I've challenged myself to read more of the "classics," especially those that focus on the journeys and struggles of women. I didn't know where to start, and this book gave me a feel for what I should be looking for while providing me with a grasp of various influential authors' works and interesting personalities. I never felt bored or overwhelmed because each chapter was only a few pages long and dealt with one (except in the case of the Bronte sisters) writer at a time. I liked the fast pace, and it was a very enjoyable way to learn about significant figures in literature.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Sharla

    The premise of the book, sitting down for a drink with several dead women writers and talking to them about their lives and works, was very promising. Unfortunately, the book did not really live up to its promise. Some of the essays were well done, but others seemed to be nothing but a string of the author's quotes strung together as "conversation." The book was somewhat interesting for those who are curious about the authors and who don't already know anything about them. For those who are fami The premise of the book, sitting down for a drink with several dead women writers and talking to them about their lives and works, was very promising. Unfortunately, the book did not really live up to its promise. Some of the essays were well done, but others seemed to be nothing but a string of the author's quotes strung together as "conversation." The book was somewhat interesting for those who are curious about the authors and who don't already know anything about them. For those who are familiar with the authors and their lives, it fails to engage.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Conda Douglas

    This book is a hoot and three halves, for me, an English major. I loved revisiting these authors and remembering about them and their lives while laughing out loud. I also enjoyed being able to indulge my ADD self and jump around within the book, reading which author I wanted to read next. One caveat: much of my pleasure came from knowing quite a lot about the authors (English major, remember?) portrayed here. I don't know if a reader who didn't know the subjects would enjoy this as much. This book is a hoot and three halves, for me, an English major. I loved revisiting these authors and remembering about them and their lives while laughing out loud. I also enjoyed being able to indulge my ADD self and jump around within the book, reading which author I wanted to read next. One caveat: much of my pleasure came from knowing quite a lot about the authors (English major, remember?) portrayed here. I don't know if a reader who didn't know the subjects would enjoy this as much.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Bonnie Schroeder

    Not simply humorous, this collection of imagined encounters with the likes of Dorothy Parker and Margaret Mitchell is educational as well. Killing off a bottle of wine with Virginia Woolf, while painfully aware that she's wearing a coat with pockets full of stones, her hair still damp from the river. Laughing it up with Irma Bombeck at the Old Town Tortilla Factory in Scottsdale, Arizona while downing pitchers of margaritas. This slim volume is funny and informative, and the Dead Women Writers a Not simply humorous, this collection of imagined encounters with the likes of Dorothy Parker and Margaret Mitchell is educational as well. Killing off a bottle of wine with Virginia Woolf, while painfully aware that she's wearing a coat with pockets full of stones, her hair still damp from the river. Laughing it up with Irma Bombeck at the Old Town Tortilla Factory in Scottsdale, Arizona while downing pitchers of margaritas. This slim volume is funny and informative, and the Dead Women Writers act and sound the way one would imagine. The closest one can come to actually being able to converse with these literary heroines.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Nandini Reddy Dayal

    This is a charming book with imaginative and humorous conversations between the authors and dead writers such as Margaret Mead, Sylvia Plath, Emily Dickinson, Virginia Woolf, Ayn Rand, Erma Bombeck and many others. A drink, a comfortable chair and a conversation is the essence of this book and I did love how imaginative Ambrose and Turner were with every conversation. A light read and great one for every writer. I am on to the second part too now.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Robin Spindt

    A great study of women writers If you are interested in a compendium of early women writers of the 20th century, a great and valuable resource is here. Written tongue and cheek, but with great facts.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Annette McIntyre

    Interesting premise I learned a very little something about the dead women writers but overall found the stories totally unsatisfying. I have no intention of reading anything else in this series or by the authors of the book.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Amy Moritz

    This book had been on my Amazon list for some time. I mean, c'mon how can you NOT want to read a book called "Drinking with Dead Women Writers?" It was a Christmas gift and I was excited to dive into it during this rare combination of scheduled day off and snow day. Reading about dead women writers it was! I noticed another review of this book which said something like "Four stars for the idea, three stars for the execution." And yep, that sounds about right. The premise is that these two women in This book had been on my Amazon list for some time. I mean, c'mon how can you NOT want to read a book called "Drinking with Dead Women Writers?" It was a Christmas gift and I was excited to dive into it during this rare combination of scheduled day off and snow day. Reading about dead women writers it was! I noticed another review of this book which said something like "Four stars for the idea, three stars for the execution." And yep, that sounds about right. The premise is that these two women interview these famous dead women writers over drinks. Each chapter is short. Each chapter pretty much follows the same formula -- they meet up (usually in a bar, but sometimes at the dead writer's former home), the author gives hints about her relationship with the work, the dead writer spouts off pithy lines that encompass some of the famous quotes from her work. She also often offers her own biographical sketch. They author talks about how drunk she is. End scene. There is so much potential here, but the execution is lacking. Each encounter feels like the one I had just read, only maybe vodka instead of wine, maybe the discussion is death instead of divorce. Overall I was disappointed. Tragic but true.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Leslie Langtry

    As reviewed at Bookendbabes.com: Drinking With Dead Women Writers, by AK Turner & Elaine Ambrose – reviewed by Leslie Langtry Posted on February 7, 2013 by Leslie Langtry This book was hiding from me – meaning I had to work hard to find it. This usually makes me cranky. It didn’t in this case. DRINKING WITH DEAD WOMEN WRITERS is one of those little gems you find buried in unexpected places…such as your weird aunt’s back closet. It is charming and funny and features two of my favorite things, drinki As reviewed at Bookendbabes.com: Drinking With Dead Women Writers, by AK Turner & Elaine Ambrose – reviewed by Leslie Langtry Posted on February 7, 2013 by Leslie Langtry This book was hiding from me – meaning I had to work hard to find it. This usually makes me cranky. It didn’t in this case. DRINKING WITH DEAD WOMEN WRITERS is one of those little gems you find buried in unexpected places…such as your weird aunt’s back closet. It is charming and funny and features two of my favorite things, drinking and women writers. At only little over 100 pages – I could NOT put this book down – consequently staying up very late – something that also usually results in my crankiness. But how can you be cranky reading interviews in bars with a slightly damp Virginia Woolf (with pockets full of stones), throwing back pitchers of margheritas in Arizona with Erma Bombeck, or partying on something called The Rum Trail with the Bronte sisters? Don’t even get me started on the Dorothy Parker interview. You know what I mean (wiggles eyebrows meaningfully). Not all the dead women writers are easy interviews. There are some tense moments with Sylvia Plath and that business with the gas oven, naturally – and Emily Dickenson refuses to do anything but hide in another room during her interview while draining a bottle of red. The authors, Turner and Ambrose, are women I hope to visit bars with once I am dead (call me). Or, I could party with them now (seriously, call me!). This book will make you smile and giggle – and will definitely satisfy your inner book geek (it sent mine into seizures). I suggest a bold chardonnay or you could drink along with what they drink in each chapter. If you do, make sure there is someone nearby with an adrenaline shot – mostly because you wouldn’t survive it otherwise (especially with Ayn Rand doing all those vodka shots – the lush). Give this little indie book a shot (with a shot). As two of my favorite philosophers, Bartles and James once said, “You’ll be glad you did.”

  24. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    I had fun reading this collection of shorts with well-known (deceased) female authors. I am familiar with each deceased author's works, so I feel that the authors of this book captured each woman's personality rather well. However, you do NOT have to be familiar with each writer to enjoy this novel. Each short contains accurate and amusing facts about each woman, so it's an easy way to familiarize yourself with each writer, and their works. This novel also contains a handy reference tool that li I had fun reading this collection of shorts with well-known (deceased) female authors. I am familiar with each deceased author's works, so I feel that the authors of this book captured each woman's personality rather well. However, you do NOT have to be familiar with each writer to enjoy this novel. Each short contains accurate and amusing facts about each woman, so it's an easy way to familiarize yourself with each writer, and their works. This novel also contains a handy reference tool that lists each female writer along with all publications. My only complaint about this collection is that some of the stories are TOO short, and don't do the deceased authors justice. There are a few stories that felt rushed and lacking detail, as if the deceased writer was not properly researched or the author of the story was unsure as to how to capture their personality. Most of the shorts could have been flushed out more, and there were areas in some of the stories where the dialogue felt unintentionally awkward (I say unintentionally to clarify because there are areas where the dialogue is intended to feel that way). All in all, I enjoyed this book and the concept behind it. I learned a few more facts about some of the greatest female writers of all time, plus it's handy to be able to reference all their writings in one place. So grab a glass of wine, sit back, and enjoy the modern day 'conversations' with engaging women. It's a short, light read; perfect for a lazy afternoon.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Pop Bop

    A Clever Sampler The premise is both fun and challenging. In a short "interview/conversation" piece try to capture some of the spirit of the subject author through bits of biography, snippets from their work repurposed as conversation, and maybe a few critical asides. For some authors this will work well, (Dorothy Parker is a good example, as is Edna St. Vincent Millay, of all people), and for some authors it's just a bridge too far, (being dead doesn't improve tedious and boring Ayn Rand). This i A Clever Sampler The premise is both fun and challenging. In a short "interview/conversation" piece try to capture some of the spirit of the subject author through bits of biography, snippets from their work repurposed as conversation, and maybe a few critical asides. For some authors this will work well, (Dorothy Parker is a good example, as is Edna St. Vincent Millay, of all people), and for some authors it's just a bridge too far, (being dead doesn't improve tedious and boring Ayn Rand). This isn't a sit down and read all afternoon sort of book, but it is a delightful read-a-few-chapters diversion. Some interviews work better than others and some are a little forced, as you might suspect. But, you'll learn a few things, you'll revisit a few favorite lines, and you'll get to second guess the authors' approaches to the different writers. (I like the Bronte sisters on a pub crawl.) I see that some reviewers have been disappointed because the conversations are brief and rather superficial. Well, if you expect absolute biographical accuracy, penetrating analysis, or profound new insights you'll be disappointed, but that's mostly because the subject women writers are actually dead and the authors had to make it all up. I salute them for both the effort and the result.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Terri

    The title itself was intriguing enough but the first paragraphs of the introduction set the tone and sealed the deal. "Blame it on the Cabernet. We met to share libations and laughter, but in less than an hour had outlined a book. We'd capitalize on our proven talents for drinking and our evolving talents for writing, while incorporating a literary flair by including 16 famous female authors. Game on. We agreed to write and exchange chapters for eight weeks and publish the book within four month The title itself was intriguing enough but the first paragraphs of the introduction set the tone and sealed the deal. "Blame it on the Cabernet. We met to share libations and laughter, but in less than an hour had outlined a book. We'd capitalize on our proven talents for drinking and our evolving talents for writing, while incorporating a literary flair by including 16 famous female authors. Game on. We agreed to write and exchange chapters for eight weeks and publish the book within four months. Such goals are easy to set after swilling a few bottles of wine." So with that introduction we sit down with various spirits and such famous women authors as Willa Cather, the Bronte Sisters, Louisa May Alcott and Ayn Rand. The chapters are fun, humorous, irreverent and best of all informative. I had never read Cather, or Rand, or Plath and this book piqued my interest and provided a convenient bibliography in the final chapter to inform future book choices. I LOVED "Drinking With Dead Women Writers" and I'm looking forward to when the sequel "Drinking with Dead Drunks" becomes available on the kindle.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Gaele

    There aren't enough adjectives to explain what I thought of this book. The premise was fabulous: and came from a night of chatter and too much wine. The writer's that are brought back from death to have a drink are all well-known, and surprisingly well crafted even though each entry is a very short story - impressions and descriptions are seamlessly incorporated into each section. While I would have appreciated a more "hard edged" set of questions to many of the authors - Ann Rynd and her rather There aren't enough adjectives to explain what I thought of this book. The premise was fabulous: and came from a night of chatter and too much wine. The writer's that are brought back from death to have a drink are all well-known, and surprisingly well crafted even though each entry is a very short story - impressions and descriptions are seamlessly incorporated into each section. While I would have appreciated a more "hard edged" set of questions to many of the authors - Ann Rynd and her rather dismissive attitude toward men and even other women for example - the tone you were left with after reading about each meeting seemed to carry the same tone as the most famed works by the author. The portrayals were funny and clever, with a clear indication that the lives of each woman had been researched, thought upon, and a fact, little known was included or extemporized. Apparently a book about famous drunkards (I can only assume male authors ) is to be released soon as a companion - I can't wait.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Sharon

    I have to admit that I'm not finished with this book yet, but I have formed enough of an opinion to write a review. The idea is interesting, but it could have been carried out a lot better. The two authors each meet different deceased women writers for drinks and conversation. The writers include Emily Dickinson, the Bronte sisters, Erma Bombeck, and Jane Austen. Most of the information in the short chapter devoted to each writer (or writers) could be found by searching Wikipedia. Also, the auth I have to admit that I'm not finished with this book yet, but I have formed enough of an opinion to write a review. The idea is interesting, but it could have been carried out a lot better. The two authors each meet different deceased women writers for drinks and conversation. The writers include Emily Dickinson, the Bronte sisters, Erma Bombeck, and Jane Austen. Most of the information in the short chapter devoted to each writer (or writers) could be found by searching Wikipedia. Also, the authors spend too much time gushing about how much they admire each of the writers. The only reasons I'm not giving this 1 star are the idea has potential, and I got the e-version free of charge. The authors should have included information about the women writers that isn't already widely known, and should have given less attention to their own personal feelings about the writers. Some people might find this entertaining. It didn't grab me.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Holand

    I thought the concept for this collection of essays was really interesting and creative. Within each chapter you’ll find plenty of witty dialogue and enough references to these writers’ lives to make you want to know more/check out some of their own works (several of these women I knew virtually nothing about before hand). The collection is quite short and most of the essays follow a similar structure, so I’d recommend reading one or two at a time. Think of reading this book as a light cocktail I thought the concept for this collection of essays was really interesting and creative. Within each chapter you’ll find plenty of witty dialogue and enough references to these writers’ lives to make you want to know more/check out some of their own works (several of these women I knew virtually nothing about before hand). The collection is quite short and most of the essays follow a similar structure, so I’d recommend reading one or two at a time. Think of reading this book as a light cocktail or two during happy hour, something to enjoy before jumping back into whatever’s on your literary menu.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Melissa

    I was very disappointed with this book. It's extremely short and gives no new information on the authors. I would have much preferred the authors of THIS book sitting together and drinking, describing the work of the featured women authors and how it made them feel. Also, there are very many eye rolling moments when they quote an author who, as if talking to them, says a very famous personal quote. Ex: ( Margaret Mitchell saying at the end of her chapter, "But frankly, my dear, I don't give a da I was very disappointed with this book. It's extremely short and gives no new information on the authors. I would have much preferred the authors of THIS book sitting together and drinking, describing the work of the featured women authors and how it made them feel. Also, there are very many eye rolling moments when they quote an author who, as if talking to them, says a very famous personal quote. Ex: ( Margaret Mitchell saying at the end of her chapter, "But frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn.") I find it very hard to criticize writers; It's such a personal process. But, I have to be truthful and say that I couldn't recommend this book to anyone.

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