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Auntie Mame: An Irreverent Escapade
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Auntie Mame: An Irreverent Escapade (Auntie Mame #1)

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4.11 of 5 stars 4.11  ·  rating details  ·  4,335 ratings  ·  544 reviews
Auntie Mame is back in print, the novel that introduced the world to America's most madcap, fun-loving, and irresistible aunt.
Paperback, 299 pages
Published September 11th 2001 by Broadway (first published 1955)
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Best Humorous Books
212th out of 2,921 books — 5,606 voters
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Fifties Fiction Favorites
5th out of 85 books — 68 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Nick Pageant
BR with my girl Mishy and my boy Giulio!!! WOOT!!!

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This book is part of Giulio's continuing efforts to give Mishy and I a little culture so we don't embarrass him at parties. Is Giulio always right? Yes, he is. This book is hilarious!

The plot concerns a boy who is orphaned and sent into the questionable care of his Auntie Mame. Mame is probably my favorite character in any book EVER. You cannot keep this crazy bitch down! Mame takes her young charge firmly in hand by deserting all forms of tradi
...more
Richard Reviles Censorship Always in All Ways
Sparklingly witty, irreverently satirical, this 1955 novel manages to remain timelessly relevant in its cutting send-up of conformity, conservatism, and cupidity. Mame Dennis first swam into my ken during the long, hot, boring summer of 1973, an anodyne to the astoundingly dreary Watergate hearings on TV. I complained to my mother about the absence of entertainment, and she snorted mightily: "How can *anyone* be bored in this house full of books? Here, read this," and she handed me "Auntie Mame. ...more
Carl Kleinebecker
So... There I was quietly minding my own business...growing up in New England when who... one snowy night... should land square in my lap on the "late late movie," but Mame Dennis herself wrapped in the incomparable roz russell... I stayed up until 3:00 am watching and enraptured ... the next morning I pounced on my mum first thing and told her I had a new favorite movie... She told me if I liked that I would love the book... We checked at the local book store and alas... It was OUT of print!!! ...more
Leslie Hickman
May 25, 2008 Leslie Hickman rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone who wants to laugh
Recommended to Leslie by: strolling the library shelves
On a scale of 1 to 10, this book is a solid 12!!! Strangley enough after reading this book I want to go through ALL my other ratings and lower them by one! I discovered this book while strolling through the shelves at the library looking for my book club book by Dickens. I was scanning the shelves with my eyes looking for a name of the author to guesstimate where to stop and the spine of the second in the series (Around the World with Auntie Mame) jumped out at me. So I grabbed it read the cover ...more
Ruth
I've always been a fan of the Rosalind Russell film, Auntie Mame, and after recently watching the dreadfully sub-par Mame, starring Lucille Ball, I decided it was finally time to read the book and discover madcap Mame's true story for myself. This book is absolutely hilarious, hands-down one of the funniest, most charming books I've ever read. The Rosalind Russell film is a gem, but the book takes everything wonderful about the film and multiplies it about ten times over. The book is quite a bit ...more
Fewlas
Simpatico assemblaggio di scenette che hanno come protagonista l’eccentrico-ma-non-troppo personaggio di Zia Mame. Dennis applica una sorta di umorismo all’inglese ad alcuni stereotipi americani piazzando la sua dama ogni volta al centro di situazioni diverse, cercando di creare una specie di situation comedy (non a caso in uno dei molti adattamenti Zia Mame è stata interpretata da Lucille Ball). Il risultato è abbastanza divertente in alcuni capitoli, soprattutto in quelli iniziali (“Zia Mame n ...more
Simona
Provate a immaginare cosa vi accadrebbe se alla morte di un vostro genitore doveste ritrovarvi con una zia che non conoscete e non sapete che faccia abbia? E' proprio quello che succede a Patrick, il protagonista di questi racconti. Patrick si ritrova sballottato a New York da zia Mame, una zia eccentrica, particolare, che indossa abiti strani e che cambierà la vita di Patrick, nel bene e nel male.
Mi sono divertita tantissimo a leggere le storie di questa zia che trascina il nipote a feste, bal
...more
Dianne
Like I always say "Never Judge a Book by Its Movie." You had better beleive nothing can be less true that with this book.

If you have ever seen the movie "Auntie Mame" made with Rosalind Russell and enjoyed it - you will enjoy this book just as much. Perhaps a little more actually!

Although at times it is difficult to follow, since we are talking about the late 1920's and we only go about 20 or so years into the future from there, that means a lot of the language and expressions may be a little di
...more
Philip
I've been an AUNTIE MAME fan for over 40 years, since I first encountered the Roz Russell film accidentally one afternoon. They showed it in two parts and I couldn't WAIT for the next afternoon to see the second part!

Not very long after, equally accidentally, I came across the original Patrick Dennis novel in the 25-Cent bin at a used bookstore. Both serendipitous events signaled the introduction of a character who has remained with me ever since in her various incarnations, a love affair that c
...more
Randee
Rosalind Russell will always be Auntie Mame to me. I had to be around 10 when I first saw the movie. I was enchanted and fell in love with the character as portrayed by Ms. Russell. I thought I had read the book a long time ago, but once I started reading it, I realized I hadn't. I enjoyed it, but... I was a bit surprised because I do not think that Mame comes off 'bigger than life' or totally irresistable in the book. I wasn't as drawn to her and did not fall in love with her character. Either ...more
Jessica
If there was a way I could have given this 2 1/2 stars I would have, but gave it 3, to round up...and make it an "average" read.

Oddly, this book made me feel like I was reading a story very similar...or something that I could compare it to, Breakfast at Tiffany's..but with a kid thrown in.

I've read Breakfast at Tiffany's and seen the movie adaption staring the late and great Audrey Hepburn. Maybe it was just me, but the eccentricities of Mame, and her approach on life reminded me a TON of Holly
...more
Antonio Arch
Since it was reprinted, the topic of Mame Dennis has crept into a lot of online reviews and conversations over cocktails. I recently got into a screaming match on an airplane over the topic of Mame's relevance today. Even some of the reviews on this site are less than flattering and I want to answer them all by suggesting that the authors (and readers) read the book again.
Mame is an icon, even today. She is our Alice in Wonderland all grown up, smarter, wittier and more interesting than Mary Pop
...more
Raymond
A quick preface: I’m never sure if including comments on books read in the distant past is strictly kosher on this list. Seen one way, including these books seems a pathetic attempt to build my public shelf. Seen another way, including them seems a perfect way to introduce to others material no longer in the public popular eye but still a wonderful reading experience. Until someone tells me to “shut up”, I am going to continue to add the odd personal blast from the past as seems useful to do so. ...more
Libros Prestados
Una lectura descacharrante. Me he reído muchísimo.

Nos habla de cómo Patrick Dennis (el autor utiliza un seudónimo para escribir este libro) se queda huérfano a los 10 años y queda bajo la tutela de su tía Mame. Y la tía Mame es un personaje. De hecho, es un personajazo. Es una mujer loca, bastante inconsciente, hiperactiva, que puede llegar a sacarte de quicio... pero también es una mujer culta, generosa, valiente a su modo, y no discrimina a la gente por razón de religión, raza o sexo. Es impos
...more
Laurie Notaro
Loved it. Want to read everything by Patrick Dennis.
Lori
This book by Patrick Dennis is about his Auntie Mame. it is based on his life with her. I have always loved the movie Auntie Mame with Rosalind Russell and I have the soundtrack from the musical with Angela Landsbury. I was curious to read the book. I guess it started out with entries to the Readers digest. soon it became a play. I enjoyed reading Patrick Dennis' book. A lot of the chapters ended up in the stage version and movie. Mame was an eccentric woman who loved life and parties. Patrick c ...more
Mireille Lapensee
I enjoyed reading this book as it was amusing, particularly at the beginning. Dennis has the ability to create wonderfully vivid scenes in his writing. However, I didn't feel like the book lived up to the great expectations created by so many of the reviews. The novel was largely episodic, and like many, I found the 'Reader's Digest' portions were boring and didn't succeed in tying the stories together. As it went on, the narrative grew more and more disjointed and left the reader wondering what ...more
Wendi
I LOVED this book! The Rosalind Russel version of the movie is one of my all time favorite movies. I just love it. I think it's because, in a weird way, I relate to Auntie Mame. I long ago, after seeing the movie for the first time, that I was going to do everything possible to be like the Auntie Mame in the movie - charismatic, outgoing, crazy. But not a lush, I can't hold my liquor at all.

Anyway, I learned that the movie was based on a book. I was so excited to find out because I knew that the
...more
Melora
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Judy
Madcap is not my favorite genre and madcap this is. In fact, I found it downright silly and formulaic. It was a huge bestseller and ended the year, 1955, at #2 on the bestseller list.

Ten year old Patrick is adopted by his wild and wacky aunt after his father's death. He grows up in a breathless rush of parties and adventures with his aunt among the wealthy, artistic and famous in New York City. Between times he has to go to a drab boarding school because the conservative executor of his estate t
...more
Alessandro
Puoi leggere la recensione completa QUI! (NO SPOILER)
Arwen56
Sono stata eroica. Mi merito quanto meno una standing ovation perché sono riuscita ad arrivare alla fine.

A mai più rivederci, my darling Edward Everett Tanner III. Lei ed io non siamo proprio fatti per intenderci. Senza rancore, of course.
GONZA
Mah...purtroppo se non avesse riscosso tanto successo non sarebbe arrivato con tante aspettative, rimaste deluse per la maggior parte.
Chiaramente essere Zia Mame tra le due guerre è più difficile che essere anticonformisti al giorno d'oggi quando è assolutamente un must, solo che non l'ho trovata così divertente, anzi piuttosto ripetitiva e noiosa nella maggior parte dei casi. Ovviamente mi risparmierò il sequel e nonostante questo dormirò senza angosciarmi sulla reale esistenza (o meno) della
...more
Myles
My love affair with Auntie Mame is comparatively recent. It started in a conversation with a new acquaintance, and I mentioned I was in the online book business.

Without missing a beat I was told in perfect Connecticut lockjaw that "books are awfully decorative, don't you think?"

My blank look was enough to upset the whole afternoon. I was not long in buying a copy of the movie(there were none to be had in the rental places) and nearly dying of laughter. Some few months later, getting on towards C
...more
David Edmonds
Auntie Mame: An Irreverent Escapade is one of my favorite books. I stumbled on the reprint edition when it came out in 2001 at my local Barnes & Noble, and the cover caught my eye (yes, I did judge this book by its cover, and I'm so glad that I did, since it caused a love affair with Mame that has lasted for twelve years now). Every couple of years, I need a Mame fix and I pull the book off the shelves and reacquaint myself with all the characters and madcap adventures found within (as well ...more
Lolene
I would never have remembered that I read this book in my youth if Jessica Day George (a favorite author...you should totally read her dragon series and her retold fairy tales...just sayin') hadn't added it to her list. Holy cow. It brought back a flood of memories just thinking about it, like when you smell a particular smell that takes you right to a place from your dim, distant past. I remember exactly where I was when I read it, which is quite a feat in itself, considering the fact that it h ...more
Valetta
L'atmosfera è quella di una commedia hollywoodiana anni '50. Ed in effetti ne hanno tratto un film, una commedia teatrale e un musical.
Buona società newyorkese, appartamenti enormi e lussuosi,feste a ripetizione, ricchezza, ipocrisia e.. lei, l'elemento destabilizzate. Zia Mame: anticonformista, all'avanguardia, grande appassionata di wiskhy, pronta a sperimentare ogni cosa purchè sappia di novità, sofisticata ma anche terribilemtne ingenua. Una forza della natura che sa anche essere incredibilm
...more
Aries
Acquistato sull’onda dei tanti commenti entusiastici ho tenuto in serbo “Zia Mame” per un momento in cui avessi avuto la necessità e la voglia di leggere qualcosa di abbastanza leggero e scanzonato.

Letto in quest’ottica il romanzo è assolutamente perfetto: capitoli facilmente divorabili ed autoconclusivi, vicende lievi e frizzanti, una protagonista assolutamente travolgente; l’unico aspetto che ho trovato stonato riguarda la sensazione di “eccesso” che mi è arrivata in certi momenti, l’impressio
...more
Brooke
I really, really liked this book. If you enjoy P.G. Wodehouse--I'm looking at you, Alyson--you would probably enjoy this book, too. It reminds me of the Jeeves stories that are set in New York. Anyway, the only thing I didn't like about this book was the rather clumsy framing device in which the narrator, Patrick Dennis, compares memories of his adventures with his aunt to the cookie-cutter plot of a Reader's Digest novel featuring the "Unforgettable Character." The afterword by Michael Tanner ( ...more
Rory
If you have seen the classic film or the stage show then most of the story is already quite familiar to you--not a bad thing to say about any adaptation. And I do like the fact that the books has many more adventures with the older Patrick between college and his first few years out in the adult world.

The biggest difference is how really adult the Mame character is around Patrick at any age. Things hinted at in the film--racism, sexism, antisemitism and homophobia are all talked about in much br
...more
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Edward Everett Tanner III spent the last years of his life as a butler, in spite of having been one of the most popular novelists of the 1950s and 1960s. A bisexual, he had a wife and family, but also pursued relationships with men on the side.
More about Patrick Dennis...

Other Books in the Series

Auntie Mame (2 books)
  • Around the World With Auntie Mame
Around the World With Auntie Mame The Joyous Season Little Me: The Intimate Memoirs of that Great Star of Stage, Screen and Television/Belle Poitrine/as told to Genius Paradise

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“Oh, darling, you know we writers must occasionally stretch a point to heighten the dramatic situation. ” 15 likes
“Life is a banquet and most poor s.o.b.'s are starving to death." Auntie Mame” 14 likes
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