The Price of Illusion by Joan Juliet Buck
A Memoir

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There are many things in “The Price of Illusion” that don’t sound candidly complete. But Buck has been a fabulous Zelig in the world of memoirs. She has witnessed or experienced a book’s worth of tellable tales, tall or otherwise. She’s certainly entitled to a version of her own.
-NY Times

Synopsis

From Joan Juliet Buck, former editor-in-chief of Paris Vogue comes her dazzling, compulsively readable memoir: a fabulous account of four decades spent in the creative heart of London, New York, Los Angeles, and Paris, chronicling her quest to discover the difference between glitter and gold, illusion and reality, and what looks like happiness from the thing itself.

Born into a world of make-believe as the daughter of a larger-than-life film producer, Joan Juliet Buck’s childhood was a whirlwind of famous faces, ever-changing home addresses, and a fascination with the shiny surfaces of things. When Joan became the first and only American woman ever to fill Paris Vogue's coveted position of Editor in Chief, a “figurehead in the cult of fashion and beauty,” she had the means to recreate for her aging father, now a widower, the life he’d enjoyed during his high-flying years, a splendid illusion of glamorous excess that could not be sustained indefinitely.

Joan’s memoir tells the story of a life lived in the best places at the most interesting times: London and New York in the swinging 1960s, Rome and Milan in the dangerous 1970s, Paris in the heady 1980s and 1990s. But when her fantasy life at Vogue came to an end, she had to find out who she was after all those years of make-believe. She chronicles this journey in beautiful and at times heartbreaking prose, taking the reader through the wild parties and the fashion, the celebrities and creative geniuses as well as love, loss, and the loneliness of getting everything you thought you wanted and finding it’s not what you’d imagined. While Joan’s story is unique, her journey toward self-discovery is refreshing and universal.
 

About Joan Juliet Buck

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Joan Juliet Buck is an American novelist, critic, essayist, actress, and editor. She served as editor-in-chief of Paris Vogue from 1994 to 2001. While a contributing editor to Vogue, Vanity Fair, Condé Nast Traveler, and The New Yorker, she published two novels. Currently, her essays appear in Harper’s Bazaar. She has been onscreen in Julie & Julia and on television in Supergirl, and she lives in New York’s Hudson Valley.
 
Published March 7, 2017 by Atria Books. 416 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for The Price of Illusion
All: 2 | Positive: 0 | Negative: 2

NY Times

Above average
Reviewed by Thessaly La Force on Mar 31 2017

Most of us will never live a life as eventful and luxurious as hers, and there’s a certain pleasure in witnessing it. But her memoir should be read with a caution: If you act as if nothing’s real, you risk ending up with nothing.

Read Full Review of The Price of Illusion: A Memoir | See more reviews from NY Times

NY Times

Above average
Reviewed by Janet Maslin on Feb 22 2017

There are many things in “The Price of Illusion” that don’t sound candidly complete. But Buck has been a fabulous Zelig in the world of memoirs. She has witnessed or experienced a book’s worth of tellable tales, tall or otherwise. She’s certainly entitled to a version of her own.

Read Full Review of The Price of Illusion: A Memoir | See more reviews from NY Times

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