Blog Posts by Jessica Ferri

  • Marilyn Monroe the Bookworm: Highlights from Her Library

    Monroe reading at her apartment in 1952. (Photo:

    More than fifty years after her death, Marilyn remains the ultimate Hollywood golden girl and sex symbol. What might surprise you is Monroe, who never finished high school, was also a voracious reader.

    “Nobody could imagine what I was doing when I wasn’t shooting . . . I was going to school! I started going to classes at UCLA at night . . . I took courses in the history of literature and the history of this country and I started to read a lot, stories by wonderful writers,” she said in 1960 interview with French journalist George Belmont.

    Her personal library contained over 400 books, the majority of which were auctioned off by Christie’s in 1999. Proceeds were donated to the charity Literacy Partners that works to improve adult literacy in America.

    The blog Everlasting Star has the complete list of titles in Marilyn’s library. From classic works of literature, to cookbooks, to Freud and religious texts, here are few highlights from her collection.

    Literary Lions
    Monroe appears to have

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  • The Kate Middleton Nose Job: It's now a thing.

    The perfect nose? (Photo: Getty Images)There are those who want to dress like the Duchess, and those who just want her nose. 

    According to a New York plastic surgeon, clients will pay up to $7,000 for Kate Middleton-inspired nose job. For real.  

    Last year, British women flooded doctors’ offices hoping for Kate’s profile, and now it's happening in America. The Duchess of Cambridge’s nose is one of the most requested rhinoplasty procedures in New York City.

    Stephen Greenblatt, a New York based plastic surgeon, has 20 patients scheduled for a Middleton makeover next month—at $7,000 bucks a pop.

    Dr. Greenblatt’s receptionist tells the Daily News that Kate’s nose is a popular request because “it's just this cute, little perky nose. It's not too big. It's not too small. It will pretty much suit any type of face."

    There’s also the royal association that comes with Kate’s nose. Dr. Thomas Romo of Manhattan’s Lennox Hill hospital claims that Kate’s nose is popular amongst women 28 or older who are looking for a “regal, refined and

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  • The Real Star of "Spring Breakers": Costume Designer Heidi Bivens

    The cast of Spring Breakers. (Photo: Division Films)

    Read anything about controversial director Harmony Korine’s (“Kids” “Gummo”) new film “Spring Breakers,” about a gaggle of co-eds gone wild, and you’ll be inundated with information about the stars’ costumes (or lack thereof). 

    In her review for The New York Times, Manohla Dargis describes the spring breakers, including ex-Disney actresses Vanessa Hudgens and Selena Gomez, as “beautiful and monstrous,” and “representatives of the decline of the West in hot-pink bikinis.” The unrecognizable James Franco “wearing grillz and long cornrows,” is a “self-annointed gangsta.”

    As the costumes play a huge part in defining these characters, the real star of “Spring Breakers” just might be its costume designer, Heidi Bivens.

    Heidi Bivens and Justin Theroux in 2010. (Photo: Getty Images)“Working with [Korine] was awesome; he is the ultimate collaborator,” Bivens said in an interview with beauty blog Into the Gloss. “For the girls the question was: where do girls like that really buy their clothes? I shopped at mall stores, I pulled a lot from

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  • Lena Dunham Talks to Playboy About What You'd Talk to Playboy About

    Lena Dunham's talks sex in Playboy's April issue. (Photo: Getty Images)Once upon a time Playboy was actually a magazine that people read rather than ogled, with interesting interviews and profiles in addition to the nudie photos. Perhaps the magazine is trying to get back to their roots, because in the April issue they have 20 Questions with television’s favorite girl, Lena Dunham.

    As you can imagine, the questions center around “Girls,” sex, and body image—here are some of the juicy highlights from Dunham’s interview.

    She created “Girls” so women could see realistic depictions of their sex lives

    “I did it because I felt that the depictions of sex I had seen on television weren’t totally fair to young women trying to wrap their brains around this stuff. I didn’t do it to be provocative. I did it to be educational.”

    Who she’d like to direct in a sex scene
    “I wouldn’t mind putting David Strathairn and Rooney Mara in a room together and seeing what happens when they have sex in a movie context.”

    She gets hit on—by extras
    “Sometimes when we’re shooting the show,

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  • "Veronica Mars" Movie Raises $2 Million—Here's Why Everyone is Obsessed

    Veronica Mars is back! (Photo: Warner Bros. Television)

    The "Veronica Mars" movie is underway! On Wednesday Rob Thomas, the creator of the popular television show, managed to raise $2 million dollars in just 10 hours on the crowdfunding website Kickstarter to get a movie version of the series off the ground.

    Even though the show has been off the air since 2007, its fans haven't lost any enthusiasm. The film project was the fastest in Kickstarter history to raise $1 million dollars. For those unfamiliar with the series, here’s why people are so obsessed.

    Veronica is the feminist version of Nancy Drew
    Veronica Mars is a teenage sleuth. She gets her interest in detective work from her father, who works as a private detective in the fictional town of Neptune, California. Veronica, played by Kristen Bell, is incredibly bright and can talk herself out of any situation. She even has a Watson-like sidekick named Wallace. The show also deals very seriously with class, race, gender, and violence.

    Kristen Bell is the epitome of nerd hot

    The success of

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  • Battle of the Celebrity Advice Books: Jessica Alba vs. Gwyneth Paltrow

    Dueling gurus. (Photo: Rodale/Grand Central)

    Watch out, Gwyneth. You have some new competition when it comes to the whole life-coach thing. On Tuesday, actress Jessica Alba has released her own book, called “The Honest Life: Living Naturally and True to You,” and it already has five stars on Amazon and is a “best-seller in sustainable living.”

    When asked about the inevitable comparison to Paltrow’s healthy living newsletter GOOP, Alba told the Daily News, “Gwyneth Paltrow probably lives a very similar lifestyle, but I didn’t grow up with a bunch of money, so my tips are much more grounded: Repurposing things and making things at home.” Uh oh. It’s on.

    So who wins in the battle of green-living smugness? You tell us.

    Ridiculous Advice
    Both Paltrow and Alba have been accused of offering impractical advice for the average woman. For instance, on Alba’s suggestion to make your own baby food: “Who, especially in New York, has time for something like that?” Queens resident Samantha Willner, 22, asks. “I don’t think anyone who’s an average

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  • Maud Davies (Photo:© SWNS Group)Her story sounds like the plot of a contemporary movie. Maud Davies, a 29-year-old Englishwoman writes a study of life in her small town, complete with juicy details on drunken villagers. Unhappy, the townspeople fight to have the book suppressed. Years later, Davies is found dead, possibly murdered.

    But the scandal occurred nearly 100 years ago in 1905, and now excerpts from Davies’ book, published in a new edition called “Life in an English Village,” by Hobnob Press, are going viral.

    A New Theory on the Death of Jane Austen

    Davies describes hard-working families with “dirty children” as “a poor lot, [who] drink too much and don’t pay,” and frequently sees people at the pub drinking “more than such people could afford.” One wife gets so drunk “she could hardly sit in the cart.”

    “I’m not aware that Davies was pro-temperance. She was not judgmental about the village pubs, but obviously disapproved of drunkenness and frittering away meager income on drink,” John Chandler, a local

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  • New Bachelorette is Desiree Harstock and Fans Fear Snoozefest

    Desiree Hartsock, the new Bachelorette. (Photo: ABC/Getty)On Monday night at the end of the three-hour marathon finale of The Bachelor when Sean Lowe finally “found love” with Catherine Guidici, the next Bachelorette was announced: Desiree Hartsock, a 26-year-old “bridal stylist” from California. On social media, fans responded with a resounding "Zzzzzzzzz" over the show's choice.

    Hartsock, or “Des,” was kicked off The Bachelor after the Hometown visits, much to the surprise of fans (and to Des herself) that saw her as a frontrunner for Sean’s heart. The rejection occurred after Des’s brother expressed his skepticism for the show, calling Sean a “playboy” to his face.

    At Crushable, Alexis Rhiannon wrote that Des had been gunning for the title of Bachelorette since the day she was kicked off the show. "If you’re not sad and you’re just trying to put on a show for the camera, you have time to apply an extra layer of lipgloss right before your big scene, and you have to keep turning away from the camera to fake wipe your eyes. I see you,

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  • Tom Hardy Working on Movie About a Rescue Dog, We Might Collapse

    Tom Hardy and his canine co-star. (Photo:

    As if putting Tom Hardy in a three piece-suit in “Inception” wasn’t enough, now comes the news (and the incredibly cute photographic evidence) that he is hard at work on a film about a man and a rescue pit bull.

    Photos of the English actor, who was frustratingly unrecognizable as Bane in last year’s “Dark Knight Rises,” snuggling with an adorable pit bull puppy appeared on the Internet last night, setting women’s hearts aflame, because the only thing better than a photo of Tom Hardy is a photo of Tom Hardy holding a puppy.

    The images come from the set of the upcoming film “Animal Rescue,” “a crime drama centered around a lost pit bull, a wannabe scam artist, and a killing,” according to IMDB. The movie is based on a short story by Dennis Lehane, whose novels have inspired movies “Mystic River,” “Gone Baby Gone,” and “Shutter Island.” James Gandolfini and Noomi Rapace have also signed on.

    Seriously, is the Internet trying to kill us? (Photo:

    In case you’re wondering, “who is this Tom Hardy guy?” Let me explain. Tom is the focus of a

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  • Lady Gaga Maybe Getting Married, Fans Weirdly Upset

    Lady Gaga and boyfriend Taylor Kinney. (Photo: of Lady Gaga, 26, were not so happy about the news that the star may be planning a summer wedding to her boyfriend, actor Taylor Kinney, 31.

    The rumor came from Gaga's friend, "DJ Starlight," who told The Sun, “She’s told me he’s the one . . . I don’t think I’m dropping a secret by saying they are ready to get hitched this year. There’s a summer period when his shooting schedule will be clear and her concert and studio commitments will be minimal, so expect an announcement some time soon.”

    Who knows if there's any veracity to this story, but if reactions on Twitter are any indication, Gaga's "little monsters" aren't so gung-ho on the idea of their mother monster getting hitched.

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