Books

These Joan Didion Quotes Honor Her Legacy

She died at 87 after a battle with Parkinson’s disease.

Portrait of American author Joan Didion as she sits in a chair in front of a bookshelf, Berkeley, Ca...
Janet Fries/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Ted Streshinsky Photographic Archive/Corbis Historical/Getty Images

On Dec. 23, Joan Didion’s longtime publisher announced that the novelist, screenwriter, and cultural critic died at 87 after a battle with Parkinson’s disease. Didion is remembered as a pioneer of “New Journalism,” and a masterful stylist — both in her craft and through her image.

Ted Streshinsky Photographic Archive/Corbis Historical/Getty Images

Though Didion spent much of her life in Manhattan, her work celebrates her Sacramento roots. Through her novels and nonfiction, Didion was one of our most astute observers of Californian culture. Later in life, after experiencing the loss of both her husband and daughter, she also became a leading thinker on grief. But the best way to reflect on Didion’s legacy is through her own words. Read on for her most profound quotes.