Not a big fan of Joan Rivers, but man, this book was good.
If you’ve read this blog for, oh I don’t know, thirty seconds, you know that I love Amy Sherman-Palladino (mother of the Gilmore Girls). When I found out that she and her delightful husband Daniel had created a new show for Amazon, I was in. But here’s the thing – I liked the first season of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, but I didn’t love it. Not the way I loved my girls from Stars Hollow. So when the second season came out, I decided to watch, but wasn’t expecting much.
And I was blown away. Season Two was amazing. The Weissman family heads up to the Catskills for a summer retreat. Hilariously, her ex-husband’s family, The Maisels, also attend the same retreat. It was just like Dirty Dancing, only Jewish.
At lunch one day I happened to mention this great show to my friend (and fellow blogger), Laurie. Later, she emailed me and said it was loosely based on this book, Last Girl Before Freeway, about Joan Rivers. Way way WAY back in the dark recesses of my brain, I almost remembered hearing something about that when Mrs. Maisel first started. I think I’d shrugged it off because I wasn’t in love with the first season.
As much as I was loving the show, I knew I had to read this book. I’ve never been the biggest fan of Joan Rivers – she was always just a bit too mean for my taste. But I reasoned that if Amy Sherman-Palladino liked it, I would too.
I had no idea. Literally no idea all the things that Joan went through as she tried to be a comic. Apparently she wasn’t very good when she started, but she just kept coming back up on stage and eventually she found her schtick. I was also amazed at how hard the woman worked throughout her life. She was double+ my age and she could probably work circles around me (and I’m no slouch).
Ms. Sherman-Palladino did not lead me astray. Her show is good, but only on Amazon (sorry, they won’t share. What can we do?). But her source material is great on its own. Even if you don’t like Joan Rivers as a performer, you gotta respect her work ethic and her story.
And I’m not gonna lie – after finishing the book, I kinda wanted one of Joan's trademark QVC bumble bee pins.
Happy Red Carpeting…