Griffin Dunne

The Friday Afternoon Club: A Family Memoir

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A charming, hilarious account of Griffin Dunne's coming of age among a family of larger-than-life characters in Hollywood and Manhattan.

At nine, Sean Connery saved him from drowning. At thirteen, desperate to hook up with Janis Joplin, he attended his aunt Joan Didion's legendary L.A. party for the publication of Tom Wolfe's The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. In his early 20s, he shared an apartment in Manhattan's Hotel Des Artistes with his best friend and soulmate Carrie Fisher, while she was filming some sci-fi movie called Star Wars and he was a struggling actor working as a popcorn seller at Radio City Music Hall.

A few years later, he produced and starred in the now-iconic film After Hours, directed by Martin Scorsese. In the midst of it all, Griffin's 22-year-old sister Dominique, a rising star in Hollywood, was brutally strangled to death by her ex-boyfriend, leading to one of the most infamous public trials of the 1980s, which ended in a travesty of justice that also somehow marked the beginning of their father Dominick Dunne's career as a bestselling author of true crime narratives.

And yet, for all its bold-face cast of characters and jaw-dropping scenes, The Friday Afternoon Club is no celebrity memoir. It is, down to its bones, a family story that brilliantly embraces the poignant absurdities and best and worst efforts of its loveable, infuriating, funny and moving characters - its author most of all - finding wicked, self-deprecating humour and glints of surprising light in even the most harrowing and painful of circumstances.
Author: Griffin Dunne
Paperback Published 4 June 2024 400 pages

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