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The Wine Lover's Daughter: A Memoir

de Anne Fadiman

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1356193,029 (4.08)16
"A memoir exploring the author's father's love of wine" --

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What a sweet book about the author's relationship with her famous father but really about memory, legacy and how well we think/wish we know someone. I don't care a whit about wine and this book is still an absolute joy to spend time with. ( )
  Smokler | Jan 3, 2021 |
I did not know a lot about Clifton Fadiman when I came across this book, other than I have his book on what an individual should read to complete their literary education in life. I have taken on a number of these tomes in this quest but still have a ways to go.

This particular book is a memoir and tribute to this man by his daughter Anne and ties together his life with not only his literary career but his deep and abiding love for wine. He seems to have been quite the collector and imbiber of this ageless elixir and we are educated as to some of the better and rarer varieties. Along with this we get an insight from his daughter in some of his accomplishments, foibles, and struggles.

There is quite a bit her to admire about the love of a daughter for her father which is a nice thing. On the flipside however I felt there might have been some things revealed that might have been best kept private. Also the constant theme of wine seems to run its course to the point where she gets into a detailed discussion of her taste bud sensitivities and why she was not as into the wine thing as her father. Aside from that the book was a well written and thoughtful tribute. ( )
  knightlight777 | Jun 4, 2018 |
Christmas gift from Michael ( )
  Overgaard | Apr 20, 2018 |
Despite my “hail fellow, well met!” toward alcohol in general, I'm not a big wine person. That is, I'm perfectly happy to drink grocery store zinfandels and moscatos which Clifton Fadiman would have scorned to pour into his stew (if he had cooked, which, as his daughter tells us, he didn't), but I'd rather have whiskey or rum (or gin or vodka!). Still, I enjoyed “The Wine Lover's Daughter” very much. Even the parts about wine, which were painlessly instructive. While Fadiman spends plenty of time on wine and her dismay over her failure to enjoy the thing which, along with books, her father loved most, this is a memoir, a loving but clear-eyed appreciation of her father's life.

As the daughter of another New York secular Jew and cultural and intellectual snob (though my father was born thirty-eight years later, graduated from Cornell rather than Columbia, and enjoys the outdoors!), I was by turns fascinated and horrified by the casual institutionalized antisemitism Anne Fadiman's father endured (I'd heard the story of how he was turned down for a professorship in the Columbia English department because they had hired Lionel Trilling and “We have room for only one Jew” before, but it's still awful). Fadiman doesn't dwell excessively on the negative, though (but enough to illuminate the ways she believes her father's quirks were responses to the prejudices of society), offering a portrait of a gregarious, intellectually vigorous, ambitious, generous man who was passionate about sharing his enthusiasms – for books, wine, and civilized living – with as wide an audience as possible. ( )
  meandmybooks | Apr 13, 2018 |
I loved her two previous books "When the Spirit Catches You..." and Ex Libris: Confessions of a Common Reader, but I found this more superficially written and a bit boring. (Even though I enjoy and know a bit about wine) ( )
  bobbieharv | Feb 21, 2018 |
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