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The Nanny Diaries: A Novel by Emma…

The Nanny Diaries: A Novel (edition 2003)

by Emma McLaughlin

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7,300135769 (3.22)93
Title:The Nanny Diaries: A Novel
Authors:Emma McLaughlin
Info:St. Martin's Griffin (2003), Edition: Reprint, Paperback
Collections:Your library
Tags:Released, Read in 2004

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The Nanny Diaries by Emma McLaughlin (Author)

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» See also 93 mentions

English (128)  French (3)  Spanish (2)  Romanian (1)  Portuguese (1)  All languages (135)
Showing 1-5 of 128 (next | show all)
Just watch the movie, it's got a better storyline. ( )
  Siubhan | Feb 28, 2018 |
The seedy underworld of nannies and their clients is turned on its head in this fictional piece (based on actual people and events). Readers see everything from play dates gone sour, hidden cameras intended to capture every employee's move, and vacations that are anything but restful. Nanny struggles to keep her head above water in the X's universe while doing right by her young charge Grayer. ( )
  JCLHeatherM | Jan 27, 2018 |
I know I read this before, probably fairly soon after it came out in 2002, and I remember liking it, but that was about all I remembered. It was good all over again, but kind of sad. As a side note, it was interesting to read a story set in New York in the 1990s - back when cell phones were a shiny new toy of the rich.


There are essentially three types of nanny gigs. Type A, I provide "couple time" a few nights a week for people who work all day and parent most nights. Type B, I provide "sanity time" a few afternoons a week to a woman who mothers most days and nights. Type C, I'm brought in as one of a cast of many to collectively provide twenty-four/seven "me time" to a woman who neither works nor mothers. And her days remain a mystery to us all.
As a working woman herself, the Type A mother will relate to me as a professional and treat me with respect....The Type B mother may not work in an office, but she logs enough hours with her child to recognize it for the job it is....Suffice it to say that the quirk factor sharply increases as one moves along the spectrum from A to C. (26-27)

"How much are these people paying you? I mean, do you have a line? Is there a line they could cross?" (Sarah to Nan, 133)

Even now, even as it's gotten this out of hand, I'm distracted from my thoughts of the Xes by the trappings of the Xes. And really, it strikes me, isn't that the point? (300) ( )
  JennyArch | Feb 23, 2017 |
I would have enjoyed this book more if it had been better edited and cut down by a lot. Although I enjoyed the first half or so, it just went on, and on, dropping in quality as it did.
  csoki637 | Nov 27, 2016 |
I like this book about as much as i like "The Devil Wears Prada". Maybe a little bit more. They are very similar. I really came to care a lot about 4-year-old Grayer and it made me sad for real kids like him.

(Review written on August 21, 2014.) ( )
  danaenicole | Oct 30, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 128 (next | show all)
The authors, NYU grads themselves, have filled the novel with humorous events allegedly based on their personal experiences.
"The Nanny Diaries" is a sharply barbed comedy of manners; the denizens of New York's Upper East Side (and, by extension, their brethren in all other tony, overpriced, deadly dull neighborhoods in cities around the world) are its target.
added by stephmo | editSalon.com, Stephanie Zacharek (Mar 21, 2002)
With this hilarious, vicious satire of upper-class family life in Manhattan, McLaughlin and Kraus, ex-nannies who know of what they speak, position themselves as contempo Edith Whartons.
Although The Nanny Diaries is screamingly funny, it's also painfully sad. A very effective combination.
added by stephmo | editUSA Today, Dierdre Donahue (Mar 14, 2002)
The heart of the matter remains perfectly pitched social satire, from the children's birthday parties (''We really had to put our heads together to top last year's overnight at Gracie Mansion'') to the kind of house where African, Venetian, Art Deco, Empire and Winnie-the-Pooh styles heedlessly collide.
added by stephmo | editNew York Times, Janet Maslin (Mar 4, 2002)

» Add other authors (16 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
McLaughlin, EmmaAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kraus, NicolaAuthormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Malfroy, ValérieTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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"You should hear mama on the chapter of governesses: Mary and I have had, I should think, a dozen in our day; half of the detestable, and the rest ridiculous, and all incubi - were they not, mama?"
"My dearest, don't mention governesses; the word makes me nervous. I have suffered a martyrdom from their incompentency and caprice; I thank Heaven I have now done with them!"
- Jane Eyre
To our parents, for always reading at least one bedtime story (with voices) no matter how tuckered they were.
And to all the fabulous kids who have danced, giggled and hiccuped their way into our hearts.
We root for you still.
First words
(Prologue) Every season of my nanny career kicked off with a round of interviews so surreally similar that I'd often wonder if the mothers were slipped a secret manual at the Parents League to guide them through.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0312291639, Paperback)

The Nanny Diaries is an absolutely addictive peek into the utterly weird world of child rearing in the upper reaches of Manhattan's social strata. Cowritten by two former nannies, Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus, the novel follows the adventures of the aptly named Nan as she negotiates the Byzantine byways of working for Mrs. X, a Park Avenue mommy. Nan's 4-year-old charge, the hilariously named Grayer (his pals include Josephina, Christabelle, Brandford, and Darwin) is a genuinely good sort. He can't help it if his mom has scheduled him for every activity known to the Upper East Side, including ice skating, French lessons, and a Mommy and Me group largely attended by nannies. What makes the book so impossible to put down is the suspense of finding out what the unbelievably inconsiderate Mrs. X will demand of Nan next. One pictures the two authors having the last hearty laugh on their former employers. --Claire Dederer

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:16:32 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

Struggling to graduate from NYU and afford her microscopic studio apartment, Nanny takes a position caring for the only son of the wealthy X family. She rapidly learns the insane amount of juggling involved to ensure that a Park Avenue wife, who doesn't work, cook, clean, or raise her own child, has a smooth day. When the Xs' marriage begins to disintegrate, Nanny ends up involved way beyond the bounds of human decency or good taste. Her tenure with the X family becomes a nearly impossible mission to maintain the mental health of their four-year-old, her own integrity, and, most important, her sense of humor. Over nine tense months, Mrs. X and Nanny perform the age-old dance of decorum and power as they test the limits of modern-day servitude.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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