Initially, Marion offered only her charming and witty paper cuttings as illustrations for the earlier editions of JOY. Later, however, as her mother's health failed, Marion found herself compelled to continue her mother's legacy. Marion brought a new perspective to JOY. Where Irma was energetic and flighty, Marion was measured and methodical. She brought her artistic sensibility to the book, which is apparent in the 1964 book cover and dust-jacket. Marion also categorically refused to bring photography into the book. She felt, and rightly so, that photography would date the JOY and make it less relevant and appealing in years to come. She opted instead for line drawings, timeless and classy renderings of cooking procedures and techniques.
Marion also brought a great deal of modern culinary sense to the book. She added a section on tofu in the 1975 edition. She was known to scour new cookbooks to see if they contained any recipes "missing" from JOY. She revised the book using a meticulous index card system of her own device. If you can imagine the JOY in index card form, then you can imagine the enormity of the task she undertook.