Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Words on Wednesday ..with Hallie Ephron

A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of listening to Hallie Ephron give a talk on her new book, You'll Never Know Dear.
Hallie's latest.
Hallie spoke a little bit about her personal life. She grew up in Hollywood. You may be familiar with her sisters Nora and Delia Ephron, responsible for such gems as Heartburn, Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, Silkwood,  Sleepless in Seattle, Julie and Julia, When Harry Met Sally, You've got Mail, the list goes on and on. Her parents were collaborating writers, responsible for writing the screenplays for Carousel and Daddy Long legs, among others. Hallie also has the writing gene, and has been a finalist for the Edgar Award and four time finalist for the Mary Higgins Clark award. Talented story teller, a dose of Hollywood glamour and after her talk, I can add engaging and funny!

Hallie's new book centers on a porcelain doll which may hold the key to a disappearance of a little girl years before. Hallie came up with the idea from Mary Alice, one of her friends, (and ideas for books almost never come from friends)  Mary Alice's mother,  Blanche was a very talented craftswoman who made porcelain dolls. Shelves in the bedrooms at Blanche's southern home were lined with dolls, whose eyes seemed to eerily follow your every move.  Under the beds were doll parts, various limbs and eyes. From this, the seeds of a "deliciously creepy" story were planted. 

Hallie went on to explain a little more about how she started writing novels in her 40's.
                                                                      Hallie's advice
1. Everyone has a story to tell.
2. Observe and develop a story from your environment.
3. Travel, Soak in the atmosphere.
4. Attention to detail counts. 
Beverly Hills Murder

Since, I was on the waiting list for her new book. I picked up this one to read.   Hallie used the tabloid murder of Johnny Stompanato, boyfriend of Lana Turner (Ephron's former neighbor) as inspiration for her book.  Her book is strictly a work of fiction, but her knowledge of screenwriting and movies is obvious.
In six words. Scandal, publicity, greed complicate celebrity murder.

Be prepared for some twists.
Favorite quote: "A really good story makes you care what's going to happen to the characters after the movie ends." I was definitely engaged with the characters, and was curious where they would all end up.

Hallie also wrote book reviews for the Boston Globe, so I was inspired to pick up this book of hers.
Food for thought?
I have read some books she recommended, and put some on my to read list. If you are interested in mysteries, pick up a Hallie Ephron novel. You will get a book that will keep you engaged, but you won't find any violence against women or children. That is a no go area for her. You can learn more about Hallie Ephron by visiting her website,

Happy Reading, happy writing!


  1. Might have to check out the creepy doll story. Sounds deliciously chilling

  2. Yes. She was pretty funny. Hallie said Blanche and her friend Evelyn would comb W's golden retrievers fur for doll hair. The image stuck with me. There is a who dunnit aspect to her stories. Keeps you guessing,

  3. You were SO lucky to meet this author. How special. I suspect you have read many of her and her sister's books. I have only heard of them and the movies they generated. She had great advice, that's for sure.

  4. I love that my library offers these events. It is great to meet authors that I have read and see how they compare to the impression I have of them from reading their books. I have liked all of them, and always learn something. Someday I hope to meet some of my blogging friends, yourself included😘

  5. I have a collection of Nora's writing, but didn't know about Hallie. I'll add her to my list.

    1. I think you will enjoy her books. I am reading Missing Presumed by Susie Steiner now. It is a page turner, very suspenseful. Have a happy weekend.

  6. Hm. I am not familiar with this author but sounds like she has quite a pedigree and resume. I will need to check her out. Thanks for the post and the new author

  7. Lots of good info in this post and enticement, too. Hallie's going on my "to read"list. Not sure I am familiar with her; the sisters, yes. Glad you got a chance to hear her in person and that you shared with us. Thanks.