Jane Heller Interview, plus links to author biography, book summaries, excerpts and reviews

Jane Heller

Jane Heller

An interview with Jane Heller

Jane Heller speaks about Female Intelligence.

As I write in the Acknowledgments of Female Intelligence, the novel was inspired by an incident that occurred in Jupiter, Florida, not far from where I live. My husband and I were leaving the local movie theatre when I spotted -- and then overheard -- another couple on their way toward the exit. The woman said to her husband, "Harry, what did you think of the movie?" He grunted. She said, "I asked you, what did you think of the movie?" He shrugged. She said, "Why can't you talk to me?" He said, "About what?"

I found their interaction both amusing and frustrating. Why? Because after all the Mars/Venus books, after all the magazine articles, after all the "Oprah" segments, women are still trying desperately to get the men in their lives to communicate with them, express their feelings, share. I thought, maybe women are just better at communication -- smarter, more intuitive, more intelligent -- and maybe I can have a good time writing a novel on the subject.

Before I knew it, I had typed up the outline of a story about a heroine who coaches men in the language of Womenspeak, enabling them to become more connected to the women in their lives. She's no ordinary sensitivity trainer, either. She's an academic -- a linguist named Lynn Wyman who teaches an insufferable alpha male named Brandon Brock how to speak like a lady and then falls in love with him. Yes, the story is reminiscent of the classic film "My Fair Lady," in which Rex Harrison, a linguist, teaches Audrey Hepburn how to speak like a lady and then falls in love with her. I suppose Female Intelligence is a modern-day twist on that tale -- sort of a "My Fair Man."

Mostly, the book is my way of poking fun at the different conversational styles employed by men and women. It's also my attempt to point out that women don't always communicate clearly and honestly with other women. If Female Intelligence has a moral, it's this: that we could all use a little sensitivity training now and then.

Unless otherwise stated, this interview was conducted at the time the book was first published, and is reproduced with permission of the publisher. This interview may not be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the copyright holder.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!
Member Benefits

Join Now!

Check the advantages!
Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year

    •  
    • FREE
    • MEMBER
    • Range of media reviews for each book
    • Excerpts of all featured books
    • Author bios, interviews and pronunciations
    • Browse by genre
    • Book club discussions
    • Book club advice and reading guides
    • BookBrowse reviews and "beyond the book" back-stories
    •  
    • Reviews of notable books ahead of publication
    •  
    • Free books to read and review (US Only)
    •  
    • Browse for the best books by time period, setting & theme
    •  
    • Read-alike suggestions for thousands of books and authors
    •  
    • 'My Reading List" to keep track of your books
    •  

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: The Invisible Life of Ivan Isaenko
    The Invisible Life of Ivan Isaenko
    by Scott Stambach
    BookBrowse First Impression reviewers were uniformly impressed by this difficult yet heartwarming ...
  • Book Jacket: Boy Erased
    Boy Erased
    by Garrard Conley
    Growing up in rural Arkansas, Garrard Conley did not quite fit the mold of his strait-laced, ...
  • Book Jacket: The Bones of Grace
    The Bones of Grace
    by Tahmima Anam
    The Bones of Grace completes Tahmima Anam's Bangladesh trilogy. The three novels, which can be ...

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    The Book That Matters Most
    by Ann Hood

    An enthralling novel about love, loss, secrets and friendship.

    Read Member Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    Underground Airlines
    by Ben Winters

    "The Invisible Man meets Blade Runner in this outstanding alternate history thriller." - PW Star

    Read Member Reviews

Book Discussions
Book Jacket
This Must Be the Place
by Maggie O'Farrell

An irresistible love story for fans of Beautiful Ruins and Where'd You Go, Bernadette?

About the book
Join the discussion!
Win this book!
Win Lady Cop Makes Trouble

The Kopp Sisters Return!

One of the nation's first female deputy sheriffs returns in another gripping adventure based on fact.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

Manners M (T) M

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.

 
X

Free Weekly Newsletter

Keep up with what's happening in the world of books:
Reviews, previews, interviews and more!



Spam Free: Your email is never shared with anyone; opt out any time.