She Made Me Laugh
By Richard Cohen
Simon & Schuster

Nora Ephron was many things: writer, film director, magazine editor, blogger, wife, mother. But even before her name was known, she was an “impresario of the round table”. Richard Cohen was often seated to her right at these dinner parties, where, at the tinkle of a wine glass, interesting people were nudged to say interesting things. Cohen has written a loving eulogy about a woman he knew well – to a point. After her death, in 2012, he realised there was more to discover, which is not surprising, considering she told few people about her cancer. Cohen remembers Ephron’s gleeful name-dropping and her friends (in the same stratos­phere as Meryl Streep and Steven Spielberg), as well as her bossiness and contradictions: she may have been a fierce feminist but she was also a “girlie girl” given to worrying about her small breasts. She Made Me Laugh verges on schmaltz at times, but it would surely make Ephron herself smile.