Meet the Real Nora Ephron in ‘I’ll Have What She’s Having’ [REVIEW]

Nora Ephron and her three biggest hits

Nora Ephron stole America’s heart with three of the most beloved romantic comedies ever produced.
(Photo of Nora Ephron by David Shankbone, Flickr/When Harry Met Sally… poster courtesy Columbia Pictures/Sleepless in Seattle poster courtesy TriStar Pictures/You’ve Got Mail poster courtesy Warner Bros.)

How does a tough-as-nails New York journalist become one of the most powerful players in Hollywood? Find out in Erin Carlson’s revealing new book about the one and only Nora Ephron, aptly titled I’ll Have What She’s Having: How Nora Ephron’s Three Iconic Films Saved the Romantic Comedy. 


Hachette Books

During the late 80s and throughout the 90s, Nora Ephron became a household name by creating three of the most quotable romantic comedies ever produced: When Harry Met Sally… (1989), Sleepless in Seattle (1993), and You’ve Got Mail (1998). Effervescent, empathetic and eternally optimistic, these films made us look at modern romance in a whole new light. More than that, however, they paved the way for women directors in Hollywood to tell stories and approach filmmaking from their own point of view, something that was seldom done in a male dominated industry.

Ephron’s success in Hollywood wasn’t as meteoric as it might initially seem. In fact, she began her career as a hardworking, tenacious, cutthroat reporter in Manhattan, the city she ultimately romanticized in her films. That period in her life taught her many lessons, including how to be decisive, confident, and shrewd, which were all traits that would make her a force to be reckoned with in La La Land.

Once she turned her gaze toward the silver screen, she decided to write the rom-com her way, with a fantastical eye and loads of humor. This reinvention brilliantly showcased Meg Ryan’s comedic chops and turned Tom Hanks into a leading man, thereby transforming the duo into America’s sweethearts, a feat that hadn’t been accomplished in years. Along the way, Ephron roped in other top talent to star in her films, including legends like Billy Crystal, Carrie Fisher, Rob Reiner, Rosie O’Donnell, Bill Pullman, Greg Kinnear, Dave Chappelle, and many others. These collaborations (and her own tenacity) turned Ephron into the Queen of the Romantic Comedy, a title that allowed her work on her own terms.

I’ll Have What She’s Having pulls back the curtain and reveals Nora Ephron as a woman of substance, one who dared to rewrite the rules, and who churned out one comedic tour de force after another by putting her heart on display for all to admire. Here, her story teaches us that despite heartbreak, it is possible for us to maintain our optimism and joie de vivre, and perhaps even turn that pain into major success. For anyone who has ever refused to accept the status quo and dreamed of something more, Erin Carlson takes us on the rollercoaster ride of Ephron’s life to show us that with determination and heart, anything is possible.


Erin Carlson

Erin Carlson
(Photo by A. Jesse Jiryu Davis)

Erin Carlson has covered the arts and entertainment industry at The Hollywood Reporter and the Associated Press in New York City.

Her work has appeared in Vanity FairGlamourFortune, the Los Angeles Times and the Daily Beast.

She lives in San Francisco and invites her readers to visit her home on the Web at, like her on Facebook, follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

By Erin Carlson
352 pgs. Hachette Books. $27.

TLC Book Tours Tour HostYou may order I’ll Have What She’s Having at one of these fine online retailers: Amazon, Books-A-Million, and Barnes & Noble.

I’ll Have What She’s Having is brought to you in association with TLC Book Tours.

I’ll Have What She’s Having Giveaway

Want to win a copy of I’ll Have What She’s Having for your own personal library? Simply complete the form below and click submit to enter. Giveaway limited to U.S. residents only. Contest ends September 19, 2017.

About Jathan Fink
Jathan is a journalist, philanthropist, and entrepreneur. He is also a travel junkie, foodie and jazz aficionado. A California native, he resides in Texas.

2 Responses to Meet the Real Nora Ephron in ‘I’ll Have What She’s Having’ [REVIEW]

  1. Thanks for being a part of the tour!

  2. Pingback: Erin Carlson, author of I'LL HAVE WHAT SHE'S HAVING, on tour August/September 2017 | TLC Book Tours

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