Mr. Wilder and Me: Book summary and reviews of Mr. Wilder and Me by Jonathan Coe

Mr. Wilder and Me

by Jonathan Coe

Mr. Wilder and Me by Jonathan Coe X
Mr. Wilder and Me by Jonathan Coe
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  • Published Sep 2022
    256 pages
    Genre: Literary Fiction

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Book Summary

From the award-winning author of The Rotters' Club and Middle England

In the heady summer of 1977, a naïve young woman called Calista sets out from Athens to venture into the wider world. On a Greek island that has been turned into a film set, she finds herself working for the famed Hollywood director Billy Wilder, about whom she knows almost nothing. But the time she spends in this glamorous, unfamiliar new life will change her for good.

While Calista is thrilled with her new adventure, Wilder himself is living with the realization that his star may be on the wane. Rebuffed by Hollywood, he has financed his new film with German money, and when Calista follows him to Munich for the shooting of further scenes, she finds herself joining him on a journey of memory into the dark heart of his family history.

In a novel that is at once a tender coming-of-age story and an intimate portrait of one of cinema's most intriguing figures, Jonathan Coe turns his gaze on the nature of time and fame, of family and the treacherous lure of nostalgia. When the world is catapulting towards change, do you hold on for dear life or decide it's time to let go?

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Beautifully written and full of wisdom, this unusual and fascinating book contains many treats... If you love novels set in the world of moviemaking, this is as good as the best of them." - Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

"English author Coe (Middle England) offers a witty elegy for the last gasp of old Hollywood....Coe brings great sympathy to his touching depiction of an older artist fighting to remain relevant. Coe's fans will fall for this one." - Publishers Weekly

"Outstanding... In a sense, Mr. Wilder and Me is the novel toward which Coe's fiction has always been heading." - Los Angeles Review of Books

"A beautifully elegiac novel… One of the best movie-set novels, it sticks closely to the facts but turns them into an elegant, melancholy reflection on Wilder's escape from Germany, his return to Berlin, and the troubled production of his late-career film maudit." - Bookforum

"Satisfyingly sweeping…among Coe's best…A love letter to the spirit of cinema." - The Guardian (UK)

This information about Mr. Wilder and Me was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's membership magazine, and in our weekly "Publishing This Week" newsletter. Publication information is for the USA, and (unless stated otherwise) represents the first print edition. The reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author and feel that they do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, send us a message with the mainstream reviews that you would like to see added.

Any "Author Information" displayed below reflects the author's biography at the time this particular book was published.

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Author Information

Jonathan Coe Author Biography

Copyright Viking Publishing.

Jonathan Coe was born in 1961 in Lickey, a suburb of south-west Birmingham. His first novel, The Accidental Woman was published in 1987. His best-selling novels include What a Carve Up! and The Rotters' Club (2001). He is the recipient of many prizes and awards, including both Costa Novel of the Year and Prix du Livre Européen. He won France's Prix Médicis for The House of Sleep and Italy's Premio Flaiano and Premio Bauer-Ca' Foscari.

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Other books by Jonathan Coe at BookBrowse
  • The Rotter's Club jacket
  • The Closed Circle jacket

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