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A brilliant collection of acerbic, wisecracking and hilarious essays from New York icon Fran Lebowitz, star of Martin Scorsese’s hit Netflix series, Pretend It’s a City

Fran Lebowitz is a New York legend. Arriving in the city over fifty years ago, she made her name as a columnist on Andy Warhol’s Interview magazine, before publishing two bestselling collections of essays. She’s one of America’s most insightful social commentators, a sought-after public speaker, a style icon, wit and flaneur.

In these essays, Lebowitz turns her trademark caustic wit to everything from children (‘rarely in the position to lend one a truly interesting sum of money’), to novelty ice cubes (‘flowers belong in one’s lapel, not in one’s bourbon’) and landlords (‘it is the solemn duty of every landlord to maintain an adequate supply of roaches’). And her attitude to work is the perfect antidote to our exhausting culture of self-betterment (‘3.40pm. I consider getting out of bed. I reject the notion as being unduly vigorous. I read and smoke a bit more’).

‘Great people talk about ideas, average people talk about things and small people talk about wine’
‘Think before you speak. Read before you think’
‘All God’s children are not beautiful. Most of God’s children are, in fact, barely presentable.’
‘If your sexual fantasies were truly of interest to others, they would no longer be fantasies.’

Reviews

Hilarious ... an unlikely and perhaps alarming combination of Mary Hartman and Mary McCarthy.... To a dose of Huck Finn add some Lenny Bruce, Oscar Wilde and Alexis de Tocqueville, a dash of cabdriver, an assortment of puns, minced jargon, and top it off with smarty pants
The New York Times
A forcefield of comic self-certainty in a world of anxious uncertainty
Guardian
Right on the mark ... Among the things she hates ... baggage-claim areas, high tech, after-shave lotion, adults who roller skate, children who speak French, or anyone who is unduly tan
Newsweek
Unique .... Lebowitz offers vocational guides for aspiring heiresses, popes, empresses; manuals for landlords; guidance to the rich who wish to meet the poor
Vogue
The funniest woman in America
Washington Post