Loose Diamonds: Book summary and reviews of Loose Diamonds by Amy Ephron

Loose Diamonds

...and other things I've lost (and found) along the way

by Amy Ephron

Loose Diamonds
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  • Published in USA  Sep 2011
    176 pages
    Genre: Short Stories & Essays

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Book Summary

In Loose Diamonds, an engaging collection of essays and observations, Amy Ephron, the acclaimed, award-winning author of the One Sunday Morning and A Cup of Tea, paints a rich, vivid, and comic portrait of modern living from a modern woman's perspective. Fans of the writings of Amy Sedaris and Joan Didion's Slouching Toward Bethlehem will enjoy Ephron's funny, incisive take on the intricate weave of a woman's world.

Four years ago, Amy Ephron came home to find all her jewelry was missing - taken by a burglar who'd made off with 14 million in stolen goods across Los Angeles. Gone were the gold stud earrings her mother had given to her when she'd had her ears pierced; the marcasite-and-crystal bracelet she'd worn like armor in her early twenties; the pearls from an ex-fiance. Ephron came to realize the true value of her possessions lay not in their financial worth but in the memories she associated with each piece.

With her extraordinary eye for period detail, biting wit, and subtle social commentary, Loose Diamonds is a work of priceless recollections of the funny, the sad, and the remarkable in her life. From "The Bird Man," a famous architect who taught her to believe in magic in the '60s, an afternoon in the '70s spent as a reporter with Squeaky Fromme, to long nights in the L.A. of the '80s drinking Cristal, her life-long love affair with Saks Fifth Avenue in New York City, to the struggles of post-modern dating and family life, Ephron beautifully explores the power of love and loss and celebrates the value of memories. As she muses about marriage, divorce, infidelity, or the ability to say "next?" Ephron infects us with her buoyant optimism and dead-pan humor.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Ephron offers a deeply honest and compelling look at the events that made her the woman she is today." - The Daily Beast

"The quirky collection of stories goes back to her Los Angeles childhood and goes up through her marriage, divorce and re-marriage. Her honest approach to her good and not-so-good relationships might be just the thing for anyone feeling sorry for themselves." - Harper's Bazaar

"Ephron is a master at evoking a strong sense of time and place.... Her captivating new book is a deliciously honest account of [her] life experiences, wonderful vignettes that, to borrow her own words, are akin to 'sparkling stones that I imagine come wrapped in a velvet cloth.' - The Jewish Journal

"I must admit, I read the whole book in a single day. The pages turn themselves and Ephron has quite a palate of experiences to relate. ....The interesting thing about Ephron's stories is their unassuming honesty. She allows the reader to take away what they will, without spelling out life lessons and overly poignant observations." - HelloGiggles.com

"These bagatelles offer glittering diversion but little of lasting worth." - Kirkus

"The book's tone is entertainingly breezy, but lacks depth. The seeming randomness and paucity of material makes the slim volume feel like a dry run for a longer work." - Publishers Weekly

"[A] nosegay of life essays whose pronouns are mostly 'I' and 'we,' but are also by implication 'you' - as in, 'here's my experience of this or that life-changing moment; what's yours?'" - The News Tribune

The information about Loose Diamonds shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

Reader Reviews

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Janice H. (Savage, Minnesota)

Interesting and Entertaining
I was drawn to the book by its title - Loose Diamonds ... and other things I've lost (and found) along the way. I read this book as soon as I received it and enjoyed learning more about our author with every new story in her book. She has some weird yet interesting stores to tell including meeting Squeaky Frome of the Charles Manson cult, entertaining her neighbor, the Birdman as a young girl, and socializing with the rich lady down the street. I especially enjoyed her story, 'Staying" about whether to divorce or not.

I found her stories interesting, entertaining, and quite delightful and some of them down right hilarious. Any modern family with a stepdad or a stepmom and step siblings will relate to her down to earth stories of disaster waiting to happen.

I really enjoyed the book and I think you will too.

Sandra S. (Huntington Woods, Michigan)

Learning To Look Forward To Changes In Life!
Amy Ephron's most recent book is a collection of short memoirs from her life's journey, up to this present moment. The title caught my eye, and from the first page to the last, I enjoyed every experience she related. The first essay was titled Loose Diamonds, it was about a remembrance she had of loosing her "valuable" jewelry to a robbery in her apartment and what she learned from that experience. The first memoir also set the tone for the rest of her book. Her writing is wonderfully descriptive, frequently humorous, and she doesn't miss a beat when it comes to describing the different people that encompass her life. She discusses what she believes to be a true life changing moment for her. As Amy Ephron's life journey continues to challenge her, she never gives up her optimistic outlook. I would recommend "Loose Diamond" to anyone who enjoys reading essays, as well as, memoirs.

Janet P. (Spokane, WA)

Things I've also lost and found along the way
Amy Ephron's new book of 18 essays brought chuckles and tears to me, a woman who had lived through similar times. I'm a mother of four, wisely divorced, happily remarried, a daughter of a mother who would never dream of putting a milk bottle on the table, and a somewhat ADD adult who loves to laugh at the absurdities of life. Amy Ephron fits my style perfectly. I've wobbled back and forth between a 4 and a 5 on this rating, basically because I think that someone who wants to read a writer who gets right to the point and who writes equally for males and females, might not like this book. But, what the heck...I loved it! Each essay was a story in and of itself, so it was perfect summer reading. I could read one while waiting outside the bank for my place in line and read another just before nodding off to sleep. In the end, I want to be friends with Amy Ephron, so doesn't that mean her book was a success?

Patricia W. (Richmond, VA)

Loose Diamonds by Amy Ephron
This small book of essays chronicles life experiences, has wonderful insights and exhibits the wit that we associate with the Ephron name. Amy Ephron's writing style is very down to earth and oh so readable as she tells stories about herself, her family, their experiences and the lessons that she has learned. This was a book that was a pleasure to read and one that I will no doubt return to on a rainy just because I can.

Laura H

a glimpse of la and new york
This book seems spare and yet the observations in it stay with you. The use of language is also spare and yet evocative. I lived in Los Angeles in the late '70s and it captured the time for me in a way, like snapshots, like real-time. The voice of each of the pieces is also evocative of the time they're written in. I couldn't stop reading it. The one on one parody of "Why I Quit Being Psychic", the weird piece about the Manson family and the Spahn Ranch, a place I'd never go have dared to go to. And yet it brought back memories for me, some of which I'd had, some of which are imagined.
In a way, the sub-text is almost as important as the writing which was so simple as to be deceptive. And reminded me of bygone times.

Chet W. (Madison, WI)

Loose Diamonds by Amy Ephron
Interesting and yet somewhat compelling at times, Loose Diamonds gives the reader a glimpse into the past and present of a woman that relishes the idea of always having the good life and a good laugh along the way; even when some of life's events warrants tears, Amy found a way to laugh about it, and make the best of the situation. Losing, finding and embracing memories of her remarkable life. She celebrates the values of memories; she takes us from the ballroom to the boardroom, shopping the racks at Saks (in which is one of her life long passions). The book is humorous, Amy assures us through her book that life is a game of cards sometime we're dealt the aces other times the duces and every so often we're dealt a joker. An enjoyable journey.

...18 more reader reviews

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Novelist and screenwriter, Amy Ephron is the author of A Cup of Tea, White Rose, Cool Shades, Bruised Fruit, and Biodegradable Soap. She lives in Los Angeles with her three children.

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