I grew up seven miles outside of Boston, in the Lake, a small blue-collar enclave of a larger city, Newton. Lake dwellers were pretty evenly divided between Italian and Irish-Americans, with a soupcon of French-Canadians. There was no actual Lake in the Lake. The original had dried up and all that remained during my childhood was a green-slicked puddle on the site of a factory. All the Italians in the Lake had migrated from the same southern mountain village, San Donato Val di Comino. My mother and father were both Italian immigrants, but my mom was an outsider, from Sulmona, Abruzzo. My dad owned a small workingman’s bar, Leone’s Café. I went to Catholic school for twelve years. When I was a kid, I wanted to be a saint, a reporter and a cowboy. I didn’t become a saint, but I married a cowboy and sometimes I write for the Boston Globe. I’ve written a bunch of screenplays, and sold some of them, but I’m unproduced. I think it’s because none of them have explosions (but all of them have women in the lead roles). I was also lucky enough to play Joanne Moltisanti, Christopher’s mother, on HBO’s The Sopranos for four seasons. I live in a small town on the south shore of Massachusetts with my husband, Chris Cooper, and two rescue dogs, Lucky and Frenchy. KNOWING JESSE is about my son, whose luminous presence expanded and transformed everything else in my universe. I wrote the book to celebrate his life, to deal with his death, and to share him with others.


Reconnecting with Ma by Setting Her Story to the Page April 27, 2017/Beacon Broadside

Marianne Leone talks about her new memoir MA SPEAKS UP/Boston Globe

7 Questions an Interview with Marianne Leone / Solstice Literary Magazine

PRX Open Source with Christoper Lydon

A Conversation With Marianne Leone Cooper / Cowboys and Indians Magazine

5 thoughts on “About

  1. I’ve been catching up on sections of the Boston Globe and just read “The cake-tin effect” from August 23. It led me to look for you on-line, so I could write to thank you for that Opinion column and marvelous story. I, too, have a cake tin (aluminum, not stainless) but, being male, have never noticed any effect it had on anyone who might have seen me carrying it, usually loaded with a Bundt cake I’ve baked. I’ll have to be more observant the next time I have it out in public. I enjoyed reading your column. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Marianne. after bonding with you over our light beams and life teachers… I will forever sing your praise..and this my dear is just another cast out there that leaves me.. in awe … and inspires me to continue to write! You are fabulous!! (not to mention we both attended Catholic school!) wha wha


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