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Q&A With NYT Bestselling Author Jennifer Weiner, My New BFF


Jennifer & I at Book Expo America, NY, 2013

In Jennifer Weiner’s new memoir, Hungry Heart, this NY Times bestselling author is, well, an open book. And when Weiner has something to say, people listen (her social media posts are a viral sensation). This outspoken novelist, feminist, humorist, columnist, live tweeter, political activist, and Jewish mom holds nothing back in her new memoir, her first foray into nonfiction, and is sure to satisfy, even surprise her readers.

Her books have spent more than five years on the NY Times bestseller list with over 11 million copies in print in 36 countries. In addition to a collection of short stories, she has written 14 novels, including In Her Shoes, which was turned into a Hollywood movie starring Cameron Diaz, Toni Collette, and Shirley MacLaine, and continues to rank as a favorite chick flick. (Her Nanna plays an extra in the movie!)

Although her widely acclaimed books fall into the chick lit category, her adoring fans know her stories are so much more, and even literary critics can’t deny that Weiner’s real-life characters and fairy tale endings resonate with the largest population of book-buyers. On October 19, 7:30 pm., Weiner will pack the house as she divulges her raw, personal life in her newly released Hungry Heart, at the 38th annual STL Jewish Book Festival. Both hilarious and heartbreaking, her memoir will make you laugh out loud—such as the chapter about her mom Fran coming out as a lesbian during the Passover Seder (why is this night different from all other nights?!)—and other pages will provoke the ugly cry—such as when she describes the agony of suffering a miscarriage in her bathroom. In other words, Weiner is as real as it gets, and that’s what makes her so appealing.

Weiner, whose named is pronounced Whyner (as in kvetchy) and not Weener (like the hot dog), is a smart, funny, Jewish writer whose voice is akin to the women she grew up reading—Erica Jong, Nora Ephron, and Frank Lebowitz. These literary mentors inspired the Princeton grad to always remain true to herself, not only as an author, but as a wife, daughter, sister, friend, and mom to Phoebe, 8, and Lucy, 13.

On the heels of her whirlwind book tour of her first children’s novel, Littlest Bigfoot, also for sale at the event, we recently got together and chatted over green tea lattes. Not really, we exchanged emails, and here’s what she had to say: Continue reading

STL JBF Presents “Comedy, Conversation, and Courageous Women”


The 36th annual St. Louis Jewish Book Festival is about to kick off (November 2-16), and the women’s special event always attracts a sellout crowd with laughter, compelling literature, and, of course, decadent desserts that you can burn off the next morning in spin class.

This year’s literary lollapalooza is no exception, featuring a Girl’s Night Out on November 4 that you don’t want to miss. “Comedy, Conversation, and Courageous Women” features a panel of three extraordinarily talented authors whose works include a fascinating biography of the world’s first female astronaut, a comic memoir about marital escapades, and another autobiography on the brutally funny side of surviving breast cancer. Let’s just say all three of these titles are worthy of the most discerning book clubs, so get ready for a night of fun.

They are Cindy Chupack, Lynn Sherr, and Geralyn Lucas.

“All three of these celebrities are passionate ambassadors for women’s causes,” says Scott Berzon, director of the St. Louis Jewish Book Festival. “Their books cover comedy and serious topics as well, so guests can expect energy and more energy.”
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