Let Me Tell You What I Mean

Let Me Tell You What I Mean

Joan Didion

Pub date
Fourth Estate
Demy 135x204mm
96 pages
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Book Overview

From one of our most iconic and influential writers: twelve pieces never before collected that offer an illuminating glimpse into the mind and process of this legendary figure.

Mostly drawn from the earliest part of her astonishing five-decade career, Didion writes about a Gamblers Anonymous meeting, a visit to William Randolph Hearst’s castle at San Simeon, a reunion of WWII veterans in Las Vegas, and about topics ranging from Nancy Reagan to Robert Mapplethorpe, Martha Stewart and Ernest Hemingway.

With an Introduction by Hilton Als, this stunning collection reveals what would become her subjects: the press, politics, California robber barons, women, the act of writing, and her own self-doubt. Each piece is classic Didion: incisive, bemused, and stunningly prescient.

About the author

JOAN DIDION is the author of five novels, ten books of nonfiction, and a play. Her book, The Year of Magical Thinking, won the National Book Award in 2005. She lives in New York.HILTON ALS is the author of The Women and White Girls. He is a staff writer for The New Yorker and teaches at Columbia University.


  • Praise for Joan Didion:
  • ‘She writes with a razor’ New York Times
  • ‘A pioneer of New Journalism, she brilliantly chronicled America’s cultural and political life’ Guardian
  • ‘Everything Didion writes has a land’s end edginess to it- a hyper-attentive-eye on the dramas of the human condition. She writes as someone who has come through great shudders of the earth with a fundamental understanding that everything is subject to instantaneous and complete revision’ Village Voice
  • ‘She is the best chronicler California has’ Vogue