When I turned over the last page of Gabrielle Hunter’s debut memoir, Blood, Bones & Butter: The Inadvertent Education of a Reluctant Chef, I was genuinely devastated. I had thought I had a few pages left. I wasn’t ready for it to end. I wasn’t ready to say goodbye. This is not to say that the book does not end well or just as … Read More Blood, Bones & Butter by Gabrielle Hamilton
After she finished reading Andre Dubus III’s new memoir Townie one of my friends called me and asked, “Is this book as good as I think it is or is it just that I grew up around all of these places he writes about?” I told her that while place is certainly important in the book, the book is exactly as good as she … Read More Townie, by Andre Dubus III
From the beginning, I’d found Witness, a book of exquisitely written essays, deeply moving. The book begins with Smith and his wife grappling with the news that their unborn child has a hole in his heart. It’s a worst nightmare beginning. But things turn out okay. The child is born. The child thrives. The child teaches the parents so much about themselves. And it … Read More Witness, by Curtis Smith
When they had their first joint show, an art critic dubbed it: “The Diary of a Friendship” and that, too, is what one might call Patti Smith’s achingly tender diary of her relationship between her and her beloved friend, Robert Mapplethorpe, Just Kids. It’s a book that almost defies classification: It’s not really a memoir/autobiography–it’s more an auto-biography. A combination of the one and … Read More Just Kids, by Patti Smith
The Glass Castle: A Memoir by Jeannette Walls A deeply moving, unforgettable memoir of a truly hard-scrabble life. What I admire most about this book is that Jeannette Walls never paints her family as victims. Nor does she portray her unbearably narcissistic parents as evil (even though it would certainly be easy to do so–her drunken father, her childlike mother. Oh, how I was … Read More The Glass Castle: A Memoir by Jeannette Walls
When my dear friend Kat came to visit on the day after my son’s first birthday, she brought with her several books, one of which was Rachel Cusk’s brilliant, startling book A Life’s Work: On Becoming a Mother. Kat expressed regret that she had not gotten the book to me sooner, but now having read the book, I have to say I think her … Read More A Life’s Work, by Rachel Cusk
If I press a book into your hand and beg you to read it, you will know that I am doing so because I love the book and I want to share that love with you. When you examine the beloved book, you will note how many pages I’ve dog eared. The more dog ears, the deeper my love. Paul Lisicky’s gorgeous, tender book … Read More Famous Builder, by Paul Lisicky
How many of the NYT 100 notable books have you read? Me: I’m reading Bridge of Sighs, I’ve read The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, next up I will read Out Stealing Horses: A Novel. My own notable books of the year list includes: Famous Fathers and Other Stories and God Is Dead.