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Saturday, April 17, 2010
Does anyone remember Marjorie Morningstar by Herman Wouk? I was going through email this morning and my newsletter from Bookreporter.com had a reference to the book, a love story published in 1955. Boy did it bring back memories. I read that book so many times I literally destroyed it.
Marjorie is a seventeen-year-old girl who leaves her middle class Jewish family to pursue her ambitions of working in the theater. She finds the love of her life in Noel, a brilliant writer and entertainment director at a summer stock camp known as Southwind. I became totally caught up in her dreams of becoming a Broadway star and Noel's wife.
The timeline is the 1930's to the 1950's and accurately portrays the era. It's a timeless classic, a real coming of age story with unforgettable characters - her conservative Jewish parents, a comical uncle and her best friend, Wally. The end is bittersweet and I won't reveal it in case you want to read the book.
In 1958, it was made into a movie with Natalie Wood and Gene Kelly. The movie is good, the book is better. In fact, I'm going to look for a used copy online right now.