Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “I Feel Bad About My Neck” as Want to Read:
I Feel Bad About My Neck
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

I Feel Bad About My Neck

3.72  ·  Rating details ·  52,440 ratings  ·  5,934 reviews
With her disarming, intimate, completely accessible voice, and dry sense of humor, Nora Ephron shares with us her ups and downs in I Feel Bad About My Neck, a candid, hilarious look at women who are getting older and dealing with the tribulations of maintenance, menopause, empty nests, and life itself.

Ephron chronicles her life as an obsessed cook, passionate city dweller,
Kindle Edition, 137 pages
Published August 1st 2006 by Knopf
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.72  · 
Rating details
 ·  52,440 ratings  ·  5,934 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of I Feel Bad About My Neck
Jan 19, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Despite the clever and sometimes funny observations about aging, I couldn't shake the feeling that this book of essays was...trivial. Except for the final chapter (Considering the Alternative), Ephron spends a lot of time writing about superficial aspects of growing older (the skin on her neck, her disorganized purse, her worsening eyesight) that make her seem shallow and self-absorbed. In the essay focused on all the hours she devotes to maintaining her appearance (On Maintenance), she describe ...more
Sometimes it takes a friend to get you to read a book. I Feel Bad About My Neck has been on my physical bookshelves for years. I’d look at it and look at my neck and think, “Do you really want to read this book?” I’ve got six friends on GR with the beautiful name of Julie but it was the clever one that wanted to be certain to stand out, the Julie preceded by a flower, that finally gave me the push to read this book. Thank you.

Heartburn, published in 1983 was my first encounter with Nora Ephron.
Aug 24, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: wealthy older women
I listened to the audio book on CD, which is read by the author. That was not the way to go with this one. She has odd inflections and an unnatural reading cadence. For example, she might read like this:

We lived (pause)
in a white house (pause)
and I didn't (pause)
like it.

Partly because of her reading style and partly because of the content, I had trouble getting into it. It's supposed to be funny but isn't especially. She describes all the "maintenance" older women do to keep up their appearances
Jun 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was such a charming book. Aging is clearly very fraught and the sharp wit of the essays in this book is quite wonderful.
Dec 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was so sad for this book to come to an end.  I listened to the audiobook, narrated by Nora Ephron herself, which I so enjoyed because it was in such an amusing tone that no other narrator could have captured.  There were numerous wise and funny lines throughout that had me constantly rewinding...just so I could hear them again.   I hadn’t heard of her books until she passed away, and although I was drawn to this catchy title, I don’t think I could have fully appreciated it at that time since I ...more
Apr 03, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's been a rough couple years...I mean days. I grabbed this book off the shelf in the library and sat behind my son as he played some cartoony anatomy game wherein he places organs in the correct spot on a very happy looking skeleton (even though I have noted several key organs are simply not there...but I digress.). Anyway, I really had to leave the library because I was cracking up. This collection of essays includes some that are very funny and some that are less so but I had several laugh o ...more
Emily B
Dec 22, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 rounded up.
This book is witty for sure and relatable at times but not always. An easy light read for me.
May 27, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I Feel Bad About My Neck by Nora Ephron is an audiobook read by the author. This is my second reading and it seems that I have enjoyed it more than I did the first time. Could it be that I am now at an age closer to the author’s? Ephron’s humor is as sharp as ever and listening to her had me nodding my head in agreement with many of her ways of looking at life in the midlife lane. The same wit that we enjoyed in her movies is present in this book. Because this is an audiobook, I had the pleasure ...more

Multi-talented Nora Ephron was a journalist, director, and author. In her heyday Ephron wrote the screenplays for some very popular movies including 'Julie and Julia', 'You've Got Mail', 'Sleepless in Seattle', 'When Harry Met Sally', and 'Silkwood.'

Nora Ephron

This audiobook - read by the author - contains a collection of humorous essays written when Ephron was 60 years old...and stopped having birthdays. In fact Ephron notes that, upon publication of this book, she'll have been 60 for five yea
Glenn Sumi
Oct 06, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction

I've now read all five of Nora Ephron's non-fiction collections, and this one is my favourite.

It's deeper and more personal than anything else she wrote, except perhaps for a couple of pieces in her last, and (IMO) most uneven book, I Remember Nothing. Perhaps it's because in 2006, the same year this book came out, she was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia, and it forced her to look inward and to take stock of her eventful life.

The book begins with the title essay, written with the same kind
Sue Cook
The thing is this. Nora and I are not sisters.
In "On Maintenance": "When and how did it happen that you absolutely had to have a manicure?" er, never? I also don't care that much about make up or matching handbags or wrinkles. I JUST REALLY DON'T CARE.
What I care about is women being raped, beaten up, paid less,not let in, talked down to and generally fucked over because they are women.
"I Feel Bad About My Neck" adopts a universal voice but talks only about a sliver of privileged society. It i
Feb 02, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sitting in a movie theater back in the eighties, not my eighties -- the 1980s, I am smiling, laughing, just having a good ol' time when suddenly TERMS OF ENDEARMENT goes from funny to ominous to dark as turds that can signal upper g.i. bleeding. I'm thinking, "Shit, no, don't take this story there." I'm not walking out of a movie with Shirley MacLaine and Jack Nicholson in it; that fact means watching a character who's about my age die of cancer. She's got three young kids; I have one and one ba ...more
Nov 23, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humor
For most of you who are my Goodreads friends, you will be too young to really appreciate the humor in this book -- after all, you still have firm, unwrinkled necks which you have probably never even given a single thought. BUT take my word for it, someday you will. And then, you should run right out and find a copy of this book. (Perhaps you can find one cheap in the garage sales that members of my generation will be having as we downsize into assisted living apartments!) Anyway, when it comes t ...more
Feb 21, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I Feel Bad about My Neck: And Other Thoughts on Being a [Rich White] Woman [Living in a Bubble of Privilege on the Upper East Side]

I like Nora Ephron (her politics, movies, etc), and I really wanted to enjoy this book. But it's painfully dull, and her "witty insights" are bland/overtrodden enough to make Andy Rooney seem cutting edge.

Worse yet, many of her complaints are offensively tone-deaf to the realities most people face.
- Nora Ephron sees a homeless woman on the street? Time to complain at
Nov 30, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nora Ephron is, hands-down, one of the funniest women in America. Her novels, movies, and essay collections have brought me to tears by way of laughter more than once. That's why I was a bit disappointed by this collection of essays, loosely tied around the topic of aging.

The essays on aging were amusing, but not particularly funny or fresh. It was like eating a day-old doughnut -- still tasty, but probably not worth all the calories. The weird thing -- her non-age-related essays were brilliant
Oct 04, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love Nora Ephron and wish that she was still alive so that I could continue to enjoy her witty and funny style of writing. Funny is something that I seem to crave these days. This is only her second book that I’ve read. It’s a quick read and a particularly enjoyable one.

Every parent should read her chapter “Parent in Three Stages”. I desperately needed that!
Sep 02, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have to say I'm a little baffled by Nora Ephron. She was in intern in the JFK White House and had a free pass to roam its halls. She was a reporter at Newsweek in the 1960's, before they even had female reporters. She's been married three times. One of her husbands was Pulitzer Prize winner Carl Bernstein of the Watergate scandal. And when he had an affair it wasn't just with any old woman, but with the wife of the British ambassador to the United States. She's been nominated for three academy ...more
Phillip Smith
Oct 19, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Amanda W.
It won't change your life, but it is quite a treat for a sunny afternoon. I read most of it lying in the sunshine on my bed shortly after lunch on a Saturday.

Ephron, like Sedaris & Degeneres, has a gift for expressing mundane thoughts in the most delightful phrases. The one that's in my head right now is when she describes loving cabbage strudel in the 1960s: "I don't want to get too sentimental, but it's practically the only thing I remember about my first marriage." You'll be chuckling the who
Sandy T
So I bought this book thinking it was going to be full of humor about what happens to women when they reach that "certain age". I was expecting to relate to and be amused by her musings about getting older. And that did happen... certain chapters really made me smile, and I could relate to more than I would like to admit! But for about half the chapters, the only people who might relate to it would be rich, famous, New York socialites. That obviously doesn't describe me, so even though her writi ...more
Nov 28, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: adult, non-fiction, memoir
This is hands down my biggest disappointment of 2020. Thank god it was only 200 pages and I could just power through in one sitting because it left such a sour taste in my mouth. Just didn’t vibe with this at all. It’s described as funny, feminist and a must read but I didn’t get any of that from this. Ephron has a talent for writing, sure, but that’s about it.

These essays held no substance for me. It was just very off topic ramblings of a rich white woman. It wasn’t relatable, only a handful of
Sep 12, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Malbadeen by: shallow people such as myself
Here's the thing, I would've never listened to this book if it weren't for the fact that years ago I gifted it to someone in those last few moments of Christmas-oh-shit-I-forgot-to-buy-that-person-a-gift hysteria.

I was married at the time and was, by default, put in charge of figuring out what EVERYONE should be given. My mother-in-law and I had a so-so relationship. I mean she did accuse me of purposely putting pins in her bed when she stayed the night and got poked a few times with left over
Seth Fiegerman
Dec 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm not a woman. Nor am I a parent or a successful screenwriter or a particularly ambitious cook. But I still found myself nodding my head over and over as I related to Ephron's insights on life. She writes plainly but with great humor and candidness about her abusive relationship with her apartment building, why parenting is more about quantity time than quality time and how something always seems to go wrong when she tries to exercise. It's the portions about New York that really got me, thoug ...more
It's unavoidable, we are all growing old. And in this book, Nora Ephron has decided to tackle some of the more obvious annoyances of aging. I have to say that when I first started this book, I thought, "Wow, she REALLY doesn't like herself!" But as the narrative continued, I realized that Ephron simply addressed the issues that all women grapple with as they are aging. And she does it in a highly humorous way.

The audiobook was great! I'm sure the print version was entertaining as well, but I hig
Ephron is better known as a screen writer, in particular for When Harry Met Sally and Sleepless in Seattle, films with some very funny moments and strong observations about the human psyche and relationships. In this little book, she turns the spotlight back on herself. It is a collection of articles and essays with titles such as I Hate My Handbag and What I Wish I'd Known as well as other things that affect a aging Manhattenite.

It is written as a fairly honest account of her life, but whilst i
Oct 22, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved it
The life of a woman in NYC
Nov 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jessica Woodbury
I read this to have a frivolous, light audiobook during travel. And it does fit the bill. Yet I seem to have lost some of my ability to enjoy frivolous memoir. It was not all that way. I enjoyed very much the section on food, which had hefty helpings of pride and self-deprecation in good measure.

I think younger women will not enjoy this book as much and it has nothing to do with much of the subject matter being aging. I want to talk more about aging! I found much of it insightful. The problem i
Mar 23, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir
At first I thought: This is just not something that I can ever in any way understand or comiserate with. Nora Ephron is filthy rich, twice (thrice?) divorced, extreamly successful in her career, living in Manhattan, and 64 years old. She begins with a long discourse on the pain-in-the-neck-ness of having to dye her hair to illiminate gray (I am at least 10% gray and not in the least bit upset or willing to do a thing about it), the ins and outs of purchasing expensive handbags (never, ever cross ...more

I've finished another book...

I Feel Bad About My Neck by Nora Ephron

I like Nora. She's real. And she's smart. Nice combination. Add in the fact that she shares her wisdom freely, and also in a funny way, and it makes her even better.

I could have written her exact words on reading...

"Reading is everything. Reading makes me feel I've accomplished something, learned something, become a better person. Reading makes me smarter. Reading gives me something to tal
Barbara Rice
I have a love-hate relationship with Nora Ephron. On the one hand, she's a Democrat, so I feel a certain allegience with her. I want to like her. Sometimes I actually get what she's saying.

Other times I think, can you hear yourself? Is that really what you think? Are you that vapid? She makes a point, a brilliant point, then suddenly punctures it with a denigrating remark - perhaps to keep us from taking her too seriously, perhaps to make us laugh - but it detsroys the momentum and lets us down.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Ghosts
  • How Do We Know We're Doing It Right: & Other Essays on Modern Life
  • Adults
  • How to Fail: Everything I’ve Ever Learned From Things Going Wrong
  • Exciting Times
  • Expectation
  • Girl, Woman, Other
  • The Hungover Games: A True Story
  • Pretending
  • Olive
  • Everything I Know About Love
  • Failosophy: A Handbook For When Things Go Wrong
  • Intimations
  • Raven Smith’s Trivial Pursuits
  • Quite
  • Queenie
  • Such a Fun Age
  • Small Pleasures
See similar books…
Nora Ephron was an American journalist, film director, producer, screenwriter, novelist, and blogger.

She was best known for her romantic comedies and is a triple nominee for the Academy Award for Writing Original Screenplay; for Silkwood, When Harry Met Sally... and Sleepless in Seattle. She sometimes wrote with her sister, Delia Ephron.

Related Articles

Kate Stayman-London has watched the reality dating show The Bachelor (and its eventual Bachelorette spin-off) since it first started airing in...
42 likes · 15 comments
“Reading is everything. Reading makes me feel like I've accomplished something, learned something, become a better person. Reading makes me smarter. Reading gives me something to talk about later on. Reading is the unbelievably healthy way my attention deficit disorder medicates itself. Reading is escape, and the opposite of escape; it's a way to make contact with reality after a day of making things up, and it's a way of making contact with someone else's imagination after a day that's all too real. Reading is grist. Reading is bliss.” 1005 likes
“When your children are teenagers, it's important to have a dog so that someone in the house is happy to see you.” 216 likes
More quotes…