To Die For by Joyce Maynard

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“That’s the beauty of television. It’s like an eye that’s on you all the time. . . . Kind of like God, if you want to get heavy.”

Local weather reporter Suzanne Maretto craves nothing more than to transcend life at her suburban cable television news station and follow in the footsteps of her idol: Barbara Walters. When she concludes that her unglamorous husband is getting in the way of her dream of stardom, the solution seems obvious: Get rid of him. She seduces a fifteen-year-old admirer, Jimmy, and persuades him to do her dirty work. Mission accomplished, Suzanne takes to the airwaves in her new role as grieving widow, in search of a TV deal. If that means selling Jimmy down the river, she’s ready.

Maynard’s brilliant, funny, and groundbreaking novel—adapted by Gus Van Sant into the cult classic movie of the same name, starring Nicole Kidman—was first published in 1992 before the era of manufactured stardom and the phenomenon of televised murder trials as entertainment. The book still stands as a razor-sharp satire of celebrity-fixated culture and the American obsession with TV—a novel that imagined the phenomenon of reality television before its creation, with alternately bone-chilling and hilarious accuracy.

This ebook features an illustrated biography of Joyce Maynard including rare photos from the author’s personal collection.

About Joyce Maynard

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Joyce Maynard was born on November 5, 1953. She first came to national attention in 1973 with the publication of her New York Times cover story An Eighteen-Year-Old Looks Back on Life, which she wrote while a freshman at Yale University. Since then, she has been a reporter and columnist for The New York Times, a syndicated newspaper columnist, and a regular contributor to NPR. Her writing have also been published in numerous magazines including O, The Oprah Magazine; Newsweek; The New York Times Magazine; Forbes; Salon; San Francisco Magazine; and USA Weekly. She has written both fiction and nonfiction works including The Usual Rules, The Cloud Chamber, Internal Combustion, Labor Day, and her memoirs Looking Back and At Home in the World. Her novel To Die For was adapted into a movie starring Nicole Kidman, Matt Dillon and Joaquin Phoenix.
Published April 17, 2012 by Open Road Media. 258 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, Romance. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for To Die For

Kirkus Reviews

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Maynard's ear for sincere garbage (``We're so connected, I can taste her Tic Tac,'' boasts Jimmy after Suzanne deflowers him) is as sharp as ever, but after 50 pages of such homogeneous stuff you'll start looking for the exit--unless, of course, your own taste for pulp romances of sex, power, and...

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Publishers Weekly

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Taking her inspiration from a recent murder trial, Maynard ( Baby Love ) reimagines the protagonists in fictional form: 22-year-old Suzanne Maretto, a pathologically self-absorbed, ruthlessly ambitious would-be TV journalist, and the three high school misfits she recruits to kill her husband so t...

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Publishers Weekly

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A ruthlessly ambitious young woman recruits three high school misfits to kill her husband in Maynard's carefully constructed but somewhat unconvincing fact-based fiction, a Literary Guild selection in cloth.

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Entertainment Weekly

Ever since her confessional ''An Eighteen-Year-Old Looks Back on Life'' made her a New York Times Magazine cover girl 20 years ago, Joyce Maynard has shown a good instinct for the main chance.

Jan 24 1992 | Read Full Review of To Die For


Through "interviews" with Maretto, her family, her teenage lover and friends, Maynard creates a world in which appearance is all, and even the most heinous crime can be explained and denied away—as long as the explainer knows the right platitudes.

Jan 27 1992 | Read Full Review of To Die For

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