Book Reviews of Delusions of Grandma

Delusions of Grandma
Delusions of Grandma
Author: Carrie Fisher
ISBN-13: 9780671738624
ISBN-10: 0671738623
Publication Date: 5/1/1995
Pages: 288
Rating:
  • Currently 3.3/5 Stars.
 17

3.3 stars, based on 17 ratings
Publisher: Pocket
Book Type: Paperback
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Mass-market paperback from the free book bank run by New Haven Reads.

From Publishers Weekly
Fisher ( Surrender the Pink ) is up to her usual schtick: analyzing the dynamics of a love affair gone sour. It all works fairly well, as long as the narrator, pregnant Hollywood script rewriter Cora Sharpe, doesn't get carried away with her own clever quips. Mildly concerned that she won't survive labor, Cora is writing to her unborn child. Between these piquant scribblings, the narrative backtracks to events leading up to Cora's pregnancy, including a pivotal phase in the relationship with her ex-boyfriend Ray, the expectant father . When a friend with AIDS moves in with them, Cora's efforts to ease his final days demonstrate to Ray that he is not her top priority. Exit Ray, and enter some wacky and not-so-convincing plot twists focused on Cora's flamboyant mother ("To label her eccentric would be a disservice to the words," Cora remarks). Scenarios built around this show-bizzy grandma-to-be, whose "heartfelt delusions" give the book its title, lack the conviction of earlier chapters. Still, Fisher's nonstop pithy dialogue and opinionated heroine make this a lively, witty read.

From Library Journal
With tongue in cheek, Fisher delivers another of her seriocomic novels ( Postcards from the Edge, 1987; Surrender the Pink, 1990) that seem to mirror her various lives: Hollywood brat, actress, screenwriter. Add mother to the mix, and you have her latest plot, about a screenwriter whose love affair coincides with a friend's dying of AIDS and who finds herself pregnant after the affair ends. The narrative combines letters (not too many) to her unborn daughter (she is convinced she is having a girl) with introspective monologs and dialogues with friends. (As Cora/Carrie notes, she has her friends, her talking, and her workwhere is there room for a man?) The novel is full of the throwaway one-liners for which Fisher is known, both in her films and her writing, and perhaps that's the problem with it: it is ultimately a book one can read and forget as quickly as a one-liner. Only for fans.

From Kirkus Reviews
Again mining Hollywood humor, actress/novelist/screenwriter Fisher's third novelfollowing Postcards from the Edge (plus screenplay) and Surrender the Pinkfinds her still relying on smart talk over plot. Any reader who has read all three installments of Princess Leia's wars against addiction, tinsel values, and bossy mothers will beg her to focus hereafter less on emotional hairsplitting and more on story. The first two-thirds of Delusions of Grandma are not about Grandma, but about screenwriter Cora Sharpe's affair with Ray Beaudrilleaux, a somewhat younger Hollywood lawyer. She feels "ill-suited to the mystery of being in a relationship'' and silly when they go out together; she'd rather not go out, but young Ray, so softspoken and compassionate, is a social hippety-hop. Most of the text covers their early romance and then eases into their breaking offalthough Cora is pregnant. It's all talk, with enough wacky brilliance thrown in so that a screenplay is salvageable, perhaps with cameos for famous folk and Fisher friends like, say, Meryl Streep. When not doctoring, writing, or rewriting scripts with gay fellow scriptwriter Bud (whose flippance steals his every scene), Cora lives on the phone with her committee of close friends who tolerate her continuous self-analysis. Near the book's end, her mom Viv, a kooky retired costume designer, decides to abduct her aged father from a nursing homehe's suffering from Alzheimer's diseaseand take him to his childhood home in Whitewright, Texas. And so pregnant Cora, Bud, and Viv entrain with Grandpa, who's out of it but comes up with some moving moments. The climax fades from the page, and the not very funny letters Cora writes to her unborn child move the story nowhere. Even admirers of Fisher's many skills will find this as vaporous as an HBO movie you wish you'd never watched.