Saturday, May 30, 2009

"Maneater" : You Might Need An Aperitif Before You Watch This

Conspicuous consumption is definitely out but lead times for novels and television's movies are notoriously long. Maneater (a two-part Lifetime movie premieres this weekend) based on a novel by Gigi Levangie Grazer is well-acted by Sarah Chalke of Scrubs fame. Mary's review in the Los Angeles Times.
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Thursday, May 28, 2009

Hitched Or Ditched: Reminds Us Of An Old Song

Reading about this new reality show has got an old song playing away in my head: Did YouEver Have To Make Up Your Mind? by the Lovin' Spoonful and now it won't go away!

"Did you ever have to finally decide
Say yes to one and let the other one ride
There's so many changes and tears you must hide
Did you ever have to finally decide."

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Wednesday, May 27, 2009

The Emmy Telecast: Nowhere To Go But Up

Last year's mass hosts. More is not always better.

Mary has some simple tips for the Emmy producers today in the Los Angeles Times to help make the yearly tv-love-fest a bit It has to do with Tina Fey and banning group hugs. Maybe the Real Housewives Of New Jersey could take over because they are fun to watch? Sphere: Related Content

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

In The Heights: Great Performances on PBS

PBS's Great Performances is one of the great series on television and it has struck a chord with those who love the Broadway musical by featuring a behind the scenes look at one of the bright lights of recent Broadway, In The Heights. Mary's review in the Los Angeles Times here. Sphere: Related Content

"Mental" Tries But Ends Up Being Just Goofy

Mary's review in the Los Angeles Times. Where is the reverse "E" symbol on my keyboard? Sphere: Related Content

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Agents Just Don't Get Enough Credit

If you are lucky enough to actually have a book agent (and actually get a book published) you also maybe unlucky enough to fall error to common author complaints about their agents. Mary has no such complaints as she is represented by the Regal Literary Inc. of New York and London.

What do book agents do to earn their percent?

They work when no one else is working. Before the publication party, before the book jacket conference and before the royalties (IF ANY) there is enormous amount of work the agent does with the manuscript, with the publisher and in positioning the book in the marketplace both domestic and international.

Mary is finishing her second book with Simon and Schuster --the first Oscar Season was a terrific debut novel which cracked the Los Angeles Times Bestseller List. Titled The Starlet-- it is scheduled for publication in early 2010--but the agent is already at work :

(From the Regal Literary, Inc. rights catalog)
THE STARLET is an insider’s account of life on a film set,
complete with an aging rockstar rehab guru, a sexy young
producer capable of anything, a desperate screenwriter,
locals clamoring to meet the stars, and one very, very
messed‐up actress. Throw murder and a massive drug
operation into the mix, and you have every tabloid’s dream
come true. Mary McNamara delivers a delicious read, but
this is no chick lit – it’s a smart, thoughtful look at a brutal
industry famous for devouring its young talent. Sphere: Related Content

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Glee: High School Musical For Adults

"Glee", which had its premiere episode four months before it begins its regular run this fall, is getting rave reviews and thoughtful words from the entertainment press. Mary McNamara's review in the Los Angeles Times is no exception.

Fans of Nip/Tuck will not be surprised as it comes from the mind of one of its creators. Richard Lawson from Gawker has another interesting review of what "Glee" means and why it looks to be a show to look forward to.

If you missed it, you can see the whole episode on but only for the next 20 days, then you will have to wait till the Fall:
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Saturday, May 16, 2009

Grey's Anatomy: Death Throes

Season finale of Grey's Anatomy shows just how far a once inventive show will go to kill off its characters. Read the review here.
We are convinced that like the Beatle's Abbey Road cover, you can tell who is dead and who lives from examining the Season 5 group picture.
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Thursday, May 14, 2009

Season Finale Of Lost

"Genesis, Sigmund Freud, "The Odyssey," Flannery O'Connor, "The Sopranos," Carl Jung, "Dr. Strangelove" -- Wednesday night's season finale of "Lost" was so chockablock with archetype, mythology and cultural references it was like watching Joseph Campbell on crack. " Sphere: Related Content

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Real Housewives Of New Jersey: The Real Thing


"The Real Housewives of New Jersey" promises to do what the rest of the series in the franchise never really did: show upper-middle-class families living something that approximates their actual lives." From the Los Angeles Times. Sphere: Related Content

Friday, May 8, 2009

The Alzheimer's Project: HBO

Important new series on HBO on a topic which will likely effect many of us in some way in our lifetimes. Mary's review is brilliant in its journalistic effort and its heart.
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"...A Fairly Horrible Year In The Edwards' Dream House"

What are we watching? Is it a book promotion, an Oprah moment or HGTV? Mary parses through the Elizabeth Edwards interview with Oprah and has some insights which might be missed on first viewing. In Show Tracker today in the Los Angeles Times.
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Thursday, May 7, 2009

History Alive In "WWII Behind Closed Doors"

Leave it to PBS and BBC to create a history that is as addictive to watch as HBOs Rome and the like. What did they really do in the war? The Big Three engaged in a floating crap game of tactics and strategy, fear and deceit that shaped the world. Drama with remarkable performances and recreations. Read Mary's review in the Los Angeles Times. Go to for times and schedule of the three parter in your area.
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Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Television Shrinks: "How Do You Feel About That?"

Mary takes a look at the new generation of drama and comedy featuring shrinks and revisits the great television shrinks from the past, "Hi Bob!" Fans of In Treatment and Headcase will especially enjoy the trip through television's psyche.
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Sunday, May 3, 2009

Curiously PBS Does Even More Dickens

Dickens is great; PBS is great: so why does the Old Curiosity Shop on PBS tonight not ring a bell? A Little Dorrit hangover? Mary's review in the Los Angeles Times. Just look at it this way: PBS & Ken Burns' National Park series is coming and from the short promos we have seen it looks magnificent.
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Oscar Season Now In Trade Paperback $14.00

The classic mystery novel and today’s paparazzi coincide in this engaging, insider’s look at Hollywood in the weeks leading up to the Academy Awards.

She is one of the very few reporters allowed to witness pre-telecast rehearsals and for years has covered Oscar night from the celebrity side of the red carpet and backstage during the show.

A recent recipient of an L.A. Press Club and American Association of Features Editors Awards for her industry coverage, she has interviewed innumerable stars and directors, and used her experience to craft this deliciously entertaining whodunit.

Wide audience: This novel will fascinate the many readers captivated by Hollywood and the celebrity lifestyle, while also appealing to mystery devotees and fans of smart, entertaining women’s fiction. It’s equal parts Jackie Collins, Michael Tolkin, and Sue Grafton.