A parenting-relationships book recommendation: Dinner with Edward: A Story of an Unexpected Friendship by Isabel Vincent

A critic review (source Star Tribune) can be read at: http://strib.mn/2bd1y6v.
The book is a fast, light read, but it is made poignant by the understanding that Isabel’s life is still on an upward swing — things get better, she finds love, she begins to move on — while Edward is heading toward his slow decline.
Book description from Google Books:
“Over mouthwatering dinners, an odd couple–a nonagenarian and a recently divorced reporter–engage in a series of discussions, from the importance of beauty, to living after loss, to the power of love to redeem and renew, to how to make a succulent duck breast. I loved every moment of this book . . . Everyone deserves her own Edward–and everyone deserves to read this book.” –Susannah Cahalan, bestselling author of Brain on Fire   When Isabel meets Edward, both are at a crossroads: he wants to follow his late wife to the grave, and she is ready to give up on love. Thinking she is merely helping Edward’s daughter–who lives far away and asked her to check in on her nonagenarian dad in New York–Isabel has no idea that the man in the kitchen baking the sublime roast chicken and light-as-air apricot soufflé will end up changing her life. As Edward and Isabel meet weekly for the glorious dinners that Edward prepares, he shares so much more than his recipes for apple galette or the perfect martini, or even his tips for deboning poultry. Edward is teaching Isabel the luxury of slowing down and taking the time to think through everything she does, to deconstruct her own life, cutting it back to the bone and examining the guts, no matter how messy that proves to be.Dinner with Edward is a book about sorrow and joy, love and nourishment, and about how dinner with a friend can, in the words of M. F. K. Fisher, “sustain us against the hungers of the world.” “A dinner with Edward is nothing to demur. Although the food (I am partial to the roast chicken, lovingly described) is excellent, it is the charming, sweet, and effortlessly wise company that makes this sweet read a charming way to pass a day.” –George Hodgman, New York Times bestselling author of Bettyville: A Memoir  
The book is rated 3.79/5 at goodreads.com, from 1875 ratings. See 408 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2bd0L5G.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2pPdvVq.

A parenting-relationships book recommendation: The Common Sense Book of Baby and Child Care by Benjamin Spock M. D.

A critic review (source Guardian) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2eoap41.
Where previous American parenting guides were stern and repressive, Spock was humane, benign and borderline permissive, based on – this was really radical – his devout reading of Freud.
Book description from Google Books:
This is a reprint of the One and Only Original book by Dr. Benjamin Spock on Baby and Child Care. Prior to this reprint, the original book had not been reprinted since 1957. Instead there have been many new books, all bearing Dr. Spock’s name, but these have been considerably different books and usually much shorter. No book published after 1957 has been a true reprint of the original book. Starting with Baby and Child Care (2nd ed.). New York: Pocket Books (1957), books have been coming out claiming to be new editions of the original book, but in reality they are different books, not the same book. Poor Dr. Spock has had to cater to the demands of various pressure groups who demanded revisions of his work.
The book is rated 4.16/5 at goodreads.com, from 19 ratings. See 2 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2dwLGgm.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2sdrvco.

A parenting-relationships book recommendation: Dadland by Keggie Carew

A critic review (source Financial Times) can be read at: http://on.ft.com/2ayMVqL.
Carew’s funny, fascinating and unflinching tribute to her father is a portrait of a complex man: not just a war hero but a flawed husband; not just a Jedburgh but her incorrigible and much-missed dad.
Book description from Google Books:
Winner of the Costa Book Award for Biography Keggie Carew grew up in the gravitational field of an unorthodox father who lived on his wits and dazzling charm. For most of her adult life, Keggie was kept at arm’s length from her father’s personal history, but when she is invited to join him for the sixtieth anniversary of the Jedburghs–an elite special operations unit that was the first collaboration between the American and British Secret Services during World War II–a new door opens in their relationship. As dementia stakes a claim over his memory, Keggie embarks on a quest to unravel her father’s story, and soon finds herself in a far more consuming place than she had bargained for. Tom Carew was a maverick, a left-handed stutterer, a law unto himself. As a Jedburgh he was parachuted behind enemy lines to raise guerrilla resistance first against the Germans in France, then against the Japanese in Southeast Asia, where he won the moniker “Lawrence of Burma.” But his wartime exploits are only the beginning. Part family memoir, part energetic military history, Dadland takes us on a spellbinding journey, in peace and war, into surprising and shady corners of twentieth-century politics, her rackety English childhood, the poignant breakdown of her family, the corridors of dementia and beyond. As Keggie pieces her father–and herself–back together again, she celebrates the technicolor life of an impossible, irresistible, unstoppable man.
The book is rated 3.98/5 at goodreads.com, from 318 ratings. See 58 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2azPPPo.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2tEM5Gl.

A parenting-relationships book recommendation: The Selfishness of Others: An Essay on the Fear of Narcissism by Kristin Dombek

A critic review (source NY Times) can be read at: http://nyti.ms/2d7SCyf.
Dombek’s “The Selfishness of Others: An Essay on the Fear of Narcissism” is a treatise that comes in at just under 140 pages of text, dense with information but light on its feet.
Book description from Google Books:
They’re among us, but they are not like us. They manipulate, lie, cheat, and steal. They are irresistibly charming and accomplished, appearing to live in a radiance beyond what we are capable of. But narcissists are empty. No one knows exactly what everyone else is full of–some kind of a soul, or personhood–but whatever it is, experts agree that narcissists do not have it.So goes the popular understanding of narcissism, or NPD (narcissistic personality disorder). And it’s more prevalent than ever, according to recent articles in The New York Times, The Atlantic, and Time. In bestsellers like The Narcissism Epidemic, Narcissists Exposed, and The Narcissist Next Door, pop psychologists have armed the normal with tools to identify and combat the vampiric influence of this rising population, while on websites like narcissismsurvivor.com, thousands of people congregate to swap horror stories about relationships with “narcs.”In The Selfishness of Others, the essayist Kristin Dombek provides a clear-sighted account of how a rare clinical diagnosis became a fluid cultural phenomenon, a repository for our deepest fears about love, friendship, and family. She cuts through hysteria in search of the razor-thin line between pathology and common selfishness, writing with robust skepticism toward the prophets of NPD and genuine empathy for those who see themselves as its victims. And finally, she shares her own story in a candid effort to find a path away from the cycle of fear and blame and toward a more forgiving and rewarding life.
The book is rated 3.64/5 at goodreads.com, from 556 ratings. See 90 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2d7SkYi.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2sz3CMr.

A parenting-relationships book recommendation: Land of Enchantment by Leigh Stein

A critic review (source National Post arts) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2drELlS.
Because her memoir is told with some time behind it, Stein is able to reexamine and to edit her story, or at least to reframe it.
Book description from Google Books:
Set against the stark and surreal landscape of New Mexico, Land of Enchantment is a coming-of-age memoir about young love, obsession, and loss, and how a person can imprint a place in your mind forever.   When Leigh Stein received a call from an unknown number in July 2011, she let it go to voice mail, assuming it would be her ex-boyfriend Jason. Instead, the call was from his brother: Jason had been killed in a motorcycle accident. He was twenty-three years old. She had seen him alive just a few weeks earlier. Leigh first met Jason at an audition for a tragic play. He was nineteen and troubled and intensely magnetic, a dead ringer for James Dean. Leigh was twenty-two and living at home with her parents, trying to figure out what to do with her young adult life. Within months, they had fallen in love and moved to New Mexico, the “Land of Enchantment,” a place neither of them had ever been. But what was supposed to be a romantic adventure quickly turned sinister, as Jason’s behavior went from playful and spontaneous to controlling and erratic, eventually escalating to violence. Now New Mexico was marked by isolation and the anxiety of how to leave a man she both loved and feared. Even once Leigh moved on to New York, throwing herself into her work, Jason and their time together haunted her. Land of Enchantment lyrically explores the heartbreaking complexity of why the person hurting you the most can be impossible to leave.. With searing honesty and cutting humor, Leigh wrestles with what made her fall in love with someone so destructive and how to grieve a man who wasn’t always good to her.
The book is rated 3.86/5 at goodreads.com, from 249 ratings. See 63 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2cQ1vhW.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2sfHC9e.

A parenting-relationships book recommendation: The Return: Fathers, Sons, and the Land in Between by Hisham Matar

A critic review (source NY Times) can be read at: http://nyti.ms/2czEz6B.
“The Return” is a more mature and ultimately more satisfying book than either of the novels. It moves outside the claustrophobic triangle of family romance to include the stories of brothers, uncles and cousins…
Book description from Google Books:
WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE • The acclaimed memoir about fathers and sons, a legacy of loss, and, ultimately, healing—one of The New York Times Book Review’s ten best books of the year, winner of the PEN/Jean Stein Book Award, and a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY  Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times • The Washington Post • The Guardian • Financial Times When Hisham Matar was a nineteen-year-old university student in England, his father went missing under mysterious circumstances. Hisham would never see him again, but he never gave up hope that his father might still be alive. Twenty-two years later, he returned to his native Libya in search of the truth behind his father’s disappearance. The Return is the story of what he found there. The Pulitzer Prize citation hailed The Return as “a first-person elegy for home and father.” Transforming his personal quest for answers into a brilliantly told universal tale of hope and resilience, Matar has given us an unforgettable work with a powerful human question at its core: How does one go on living in the face of unthinkable loss?Praise for The Return“A tale of mighty love, loyalty and courage. It simply must be read.”—The Spectator (U.K.) “Wise and agonizing and thrilling to read.”—Zadie Smith “[An] eloquent memoir . . . at once a suspenseful detective story about a writer investigating his father’s fate . . . and a son’s efforts to come to terms with his father’s ghost, who has haunted more than half his life by his absence.”—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times “This outstanding book . . . roves back and forth in time with a freedom that conceals the intricate precision of its art.”—The Wall Street Journal “Truly remarkable . . . a book with a profound faith in the consolations of storytelling . . . a testament to [Matar’s] father, his family and his country.”—The Daily Telegraph (U.K.) “The Return is a riveting book about love and hope, but it is also a moving meditation on grief and loss. . . . Likely to become a classic.”—Colm Tóibín “Matar’s evocative writing and his early traumas call to mind Vladimir Nabokov.”—The Washington Post “Utterly riveting.”—The Boston Globe “A moving, unflinching memoir of a family torn apart.”—Kazuo Ishiguro, The Guardian “Beautiful . . . The Return, for all the questions it cannot answer, leaves a deep emotional imprint.”—Newsday “A masterful memoir, a searing meditation on loss, exile, grief, guilt, belonging, and above all, family. It is, as well, a study of the shaping—and breaking—of the bonds between fathers and sons. . . . This is writing of the highest quality.”—The Sunday Times (U.K.)
The book is rated 4.18/5 at goodreads.com, from 2651 ratings. See 376 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2ab5uB1.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2u7qLL1.

A parenting-relationships book recommendation: Avalanche: A Love Story by Julia Leigh

A critic review (source Guardian) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2eI2EpK.
It is one of the first intelligent, personal accounts of the daily business of IVF, and as such will surely be a useful (albeit rather demoralising) resource for other women.
Book description from Google Books:
At the age of 38, acclaimed novelist Julia Leigh made her first visit to the in vitro fertilization (IVF) clinic, full of hope. So started a long and costly journey of nightly injections, blood tests, surgeries, and rituals. Writing in the immediate aftermath of her decision to stop treatment, Leigh lays bare the truths of her experience: the highs of hope and the depths of disappointment, the grip of yearning and desire, the toll on her relationships, and the unexpected graces and moments of black humor. Along the way she navigates the science of IVF, copes with the impact of treatment, and reconciles the seductive promises of the worldwide multi-billion-dollar IVF industry with the reality. Avalanche is the book that has finally been written on IVF treatment: a courageous, compelling, and ultimately wise account of a profoundly important and widespread experience. At the heart of this work is an exploration of who and how we love. It is a story we can all relate to–about the dreams we have, defeated or otherwise, for ourselves, our loves, and our relationships. Avalanche bears witness to Leigh’s raw desire, suffering, strength, and, in the end, transformation, and her shift to a different kind of love.–Adapted from dust jacket.
The book is rated 3.67/5 at goodreads.com, from 254 ratings. See 53 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2dNjoOP.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2twBOwX.

A parenting-relationships book recommendation: They Left Us Everything: A Memoir by Plum Johnson

A critic review (source National Post arts) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2cLpba9.
It’s the kind of slim, unassuming memoir that hits you deep in the gut, leaving you bruised and thoughtful long after its last page.
Book description from Google Books:
Winner of the 2015 RBC Taylor Prize Winner of the 2016 Forest of Reading� Evergreen Award(tm)  After almost twenty years of caring for elderly parents–first for their senile father,  and then for their cantankerous ninety-three-year-old mother–author Plum Johnson  and her three younger brothers experience conflicted feelings of grief and relief when  their mother, the surviving parent, dies. Now they must empty and sell the beloved  family home, which hasn’t been de-cluttered in more than half a century. Twenty-three  rooms bulge with history, antiques, and oxygen tanks. Plum remembers her loving  but difficult parents who could not have been more different: the British father, a  handsome, disciplined patriarch who nonetheless could not control his opinionated,  extroverted Southern-belle wife who loved tennis and gin gimlets. The task consumes  her, becoming more rewarding than she ever imagined. Items from childhood trigger  memories of her eccentric family growing up in a small town on the shores of Lake  Ontario in the 1950s and 60s. But unearthing new facts about her parents helps her  reconcile those relationships with a more accepting perspective about who they were  and what they valued.   They Left Us Everything is a funny, touching memoir about the importance of preserving  family history to make sense of the past and nurturing family bonds to safeguard the  future.
The book is rated 3.83/5 at goodreads.com, from 2051 ratings. See 416 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2cLq6Ye.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2tJxg5y.

A parenting-relationships book recommendation: They Left Us Everything: A Memoir by Plum Johnson

A critic review (source National Post arts) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2cLpba9.
It’s the kind of slim, unassuming memoir that hits you deep in the gut, leaving you bruised and thoughtful long after its last page.
Book description from Google Books:
Winner of the 2015 RBC Taylor Prize Winner of the 2016 Forest of Reading� Evergreen Award(tm)  After almost twenty years of caring for elderly parents–first for their senile father,  and then for their cantankerous ninety-three-year-old mother–author Plum Johnson  and her three younger brothers experience conflicted feelings of grief and relief when  their mother, the surviving parent, dies. Now they must empty and sell the beloved  family home, which hasn’t been de-cluttered in more than half a century. Twenty-three  rooms bulge with history, antiques, and oxygen tanks. Plum remembers her loving  but difficult parents who could not have been more different: the British father, a  handsome, disciplined patriarch who nonetheless could not control his opinionated,  extroverted Southern-belle wife who loved tennis and gin gimlets. The task consumes  her, becoming more rewarding than she ever imagined. Items from childhood trigger  memories of her eccentric family growing up in a small town on the shores of Lake  Ontario in the 1950s and 60s. But unearthing new facts about her parents helps her  reconcile those relationships with a more accepting perspective about who they were  and what they valued.   They Left Us Everything is a funny, touching memoir about the importance of preserving  family history to make sense of the past and nurturing family bonds to safeguard the  future.
The book is rated 3.83/5 at goodreads.com, from 2049 ratings. See 415 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2cLq6Ye.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2tJxg5y.

A parenting-relationships book recommendation: Avalanche: A Love Story by Julia Leigh

A critic review (source Guardian) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2eI2EpK.
It is one of the first intelligent, personal accounts of the daily business of IVF, and as such will surely be a useful (albeit rather demoralising) resource for other women.
Book description from Google Books:
At the age of 38, acclaimed novelist Julia Leigh made her first visit to the in vitro fertilization (IVF) clinic, full of hope. So started a long and costly journey of nightly injections, blood tests, surgeries, and rituals. Writing in the immediate aftermath of her decision to stop treatment, Leigh lays bare the truths of her experience: the highs of hope and the depths of disappointment, the grip of yearning and desire, the toll on her relationships, and the unexpected graces and moments of black humor. Along the way she navigates the science of IVF, copes with the impact of treatment, and reconciles the seductive promises of the worldwide multi-billion-dollar IVF industry with the reality. Avalanche is the book that has finally been written on IVF treatment: a courageous, compelling, and ultimately wise account of a profoundly important and widespread experience. At the heart of this work is an exploration of who and how we love. It is a story we can all relate to–about the dreams we have, defeated or otherwise, for ourselves, our loves, and our relationships. Avalanche bears witness to Leigh’s raw desire, suffering, strength, and, in the end, transformation, and her shift to a different kind of love.–Adapted from dust jacket.
The book is rated 3.67/5 at goodreads.com, from 253 ratings. See 53 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2dNjoOP.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: .