Saturday Night Widows

The Adventures of Six Friends Remaking Their Lives

Author: Becky Aikman

Publisher: Broadway Books

ISBN: 0307590453

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 368

View: 4686

Six marriages, six heartbreaks, one shared beginning. In her forties – a widow, too young, too modern to accept the role – Becky Aikman struggled to make sense of her place in an altered world. In this transcendent and infectiously wise memoir, she explores surprising new discoveries about how people experience grief and transcend loss and, following her own remarriage, forms a group with five other young widows to test these unconventional ideas. Together, these friends summon the humor, resilience, and striving spirit essential for anyone overcoming adversity. Meet the Saturday Night Widows: ringleader Becky, an unsentimental journalist who lost her husband to cancer; Tara, a polished mother of two, whose husband died in the throes of alcoholism after she filed for divorce; Denise, a widow of just five months, now struggling to get by; Marcia, a hard-driving corporate lawyer; Dawn, an alluring self-made entrepreneur whose husband was killed in a sporting accident, leaving two small children behind; and Lesley, a housewife who returned home one day to find that her husband had committed suicide. The women meet once a month, and over the course of a year, they strike out on ever more far-flung adventures, learning to live past the worst thing they thought could happen. They share emotional peaks and valleys – dating, parenting, moving, finding meaningful work, and reinventing themselves – while turning traditional thinking about loss and recovery upside down. Through it all runs the story of Aikman's own journey through grief and her love affair with a man who tempts her to marry again. In a transporting story of what friends can achieve when they hold each other up, Saturday Night Widows is a rare book that will make you laugh, think, and remind yourself that despite the utter unpredictability and occasional tragedy of life, it is also precious, fragile, and often more joyous than we recognize. From the Hardcover edition.

Saturday Night Widows

The Adventures of Six Friends Remaking Their Lives

Author: Becky Aikman

Publisher: Crown Pub

ISBN: 0307590437

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 337

View: 2376

Six marriages, six heartbreaks, one shared beginning. In this transcendent and infectiously wise memoir, Aikman explores surprising new discoveries about how people experience grief and forms a group with five other young widows to test her unconventional ideas.

Saturday Night Widows

The Adventures of Six Friends Remaking Their Lives

Author: Becky Aikman

Publisher: Broadway Books

ISBN: 0307590445

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 353

View: 6539

Describes the author's experiences as a young widow and the pivotal relationships she forged with five other widows, recounting the stories of their losses and bravery as exchanged throughout a year of monthly Saturday night meetings, during which the author met and fell in love with her current husband. (This book was previously listed in Forecast.)

Off the Cliff

How the Making of Thelma & Louise Drove Hollywood to the Edge

Author: Becky Aikman

Publisher: Penguin

ISBN: 0698405633

Category: Performing Arts

Page: 320

View: 9912

A lively and revealing behind-the-scenes look at the making of one of history's most controversial and influential movies, drawing on exclusive interviews with the cast and crew. “You’ve always been crazy,” says Louise to Thelma, shortly after she locks a police officer in the trunk of his car. “This is just the first chance you’ve had to express yourself.” In 1991, Thelma & Louise, the story of two outlaw women on the run from their disenchanted lives, was a revelation. Suddenly, a film in which women were, in every sense, behind the wheel. It turned the tables on Hollywood, instantly becoming a classic, and continues to electrify audiences as a cultural statement of defiance. But if the film’s place in history now seems certain, at the time its creation was a long shot. Only through sheer hard work and more than a little good luck did the script end up in the hands of the brilliant English filmmaker Ridley Scott, who saw its huge potential. With Scott on board, a team willing to challenge the odds came together—including the stars Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon and a fresh-faced up-and-coming actor named Brad Pitt, as well as legends like actor Harvey Keitel, composer Hans Zimmer, and old-school studio chief Alan Ladd Jr.—to create one of the most controversial movies of all time. But before icons like Davis and Sarandon got involved, Thelma & Louise was just an idea in the head of Callie Khouri, a thirty-year-old music video production manager, who was fed up with working behind the scenes on sleazy sets. At four a.m. one night, sitting in her car outside the ramshackle bungalow in Santa Monica that she shared with two friends, she had a vision: two women on a crime spree, fleeing their dull and tedious lives—lives like hers—in search of a freedom they had never before been able to realize. But in the late 1980s, Hollywood was dominated by men, both on the screen and behind the scenes. The likelihood of a script by an unheard-of screenwriter starring two women in lead roles actually getting made was remote. But Khouri had one thing going for her—she was so inexperienced she didn't really know she would be attempting the nigh impossible. In Off the Cliff, Becky Aikman tells the full extraordinary story behind this feminist sensation, which crashed through barricades and upended convention. Drawing on 130 exclusive interviews with the key players from this remarkable cast of actors, writers, and filmmakers, Aikman tells an inspiring and important underdog story about creativity, the magic of cinema, and the unjust obstacles that women in Hollywood continue to face to this day.

A Widow's Story

A Memoir

Author: Joyce Carol Oates

Publisher: Harper Collins

ISBN: 0062082639

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 432

View: 5753

Unlike anything Joyce Carol Oates has written before, A Widow’s Story is the universally acclaimed author’s poignant, intimate memoir about the unexpected death of Raymond Smith, her husband of forty-six years, and its wrenching, surprising aftermath. A recent recipient of National Book Critics Circle Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award, Oates, whose novels (Blonde, The Gravedigger’s Daughter, Little Bird of Heaven, etc.) rank among the very finest in contemporary American fiction, offers an achingly personal story of love and loss. A Widow’s Story is a literary memoir on a par with The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion and Calvin Trillin’s About Alice.

Second Firsts

Author: Christina Rasmussen

Publisher: Hay House, Inc

ISBN: 1401940846

Category: Self-Help

Page: 216

View: 1407

After studying to become a therapist and crisis intervention counselor—even doing her master’s thesis on the stages of bereavement—Christina Rasmussen thought she understood grief. But it wasn’t until losing her husband to cancer in her early 30s that she truly grasped the depths of sorrow and pain that accompany loss. Using the knowledge she gained while wading through her own grief and reading hundreds of neuroscience books, Rasmussen began to look at experiences in a new way. She realized that grief plunges you into a gap between worlds—the world before loss and the world after loss. She also realized how easy it is to become lost in this gap. In Second Firsts, Rasmussen walks you through her Life Reentry process to help you break grief’s spiral of pain, so you can stop simply surviving and begin to live again. She shows you that loss can actually be a powerful catalyst to creating a life that is in alignment with your true passions and values. The resilience, strength, and determination that have gotten you through this difficult time are the same characteristics that will help you craft your wonderful new life. Her method, which she has used successfully with thousands of clients, is based on the science of neuroplasticity and focuses on consciously releasing pain in ways that both honor suffering and rewire the brain to change your perception of the world and yourself. Using practical exercises and stories drawn from her own life and those of her clients, Rasmussen guides you through five stages of healing that help you open up to new possibilities. From acknowledging your fear, to recognizing where you stand now, to taking active steps toward a new life, Rasmussen helps you move past the pain and shows that it’s never too late to step out of the gap and experience life again—as if for the first time.

Wish You Were Here

Travels Through Loss and Hope

Author: Amy Welborn

Publisher: Image

ISBN: 0307716392

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 256

View: 2666

Wish You Were Here: Travels Through Loss and Hope is the story of Amy Welborn’s trip to the island of Sicily with three of her children five months after her husband’s sudden death from a heart attack. Her journey through city and countryside, small town and ancient ruins, opens unexpected doors of memory and reflection, a pilgrimage of the heart and an exploration of the soul. It is an observant and wry memoir and travelogue, intensely personal yet speaking to universal experiences of love and loss. Along the narrow roads and hairpin turns, the narrative reveals the beauty of the ordinary and the commonplace and asks stark questions about how we fill the empty places that a loved one leaves behind. It is a meditation on the possibility of faith, one that is unflinching, uncompromising, and altogether unsentimental when confronted by the ultimate test of belief. This book is not only a well-told memoir, but a testimony to the truth that love is stronger than death.

My War, My Life

Author: K. Sophie Stallman

Publisher: Hillcrest Publishing Group

ISBN: 1626522537

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 408

View: 2259

Three generations ago, author Sophie Stallman was a young girl living a normal and happy existence with her traditional and privileged Polish family. But when the Germans invaded Poland on September 1, 1939, Sophie's life as she knew it would cease to exist. Under Nazi-occupied Poland, Sophie and her family were forced to endure a daily life of deprivation, fear, and struggle, but despite the abysmal war conditions to which she was subjected, Sophie was determined to pursue her own life in spite of the war. Pressing forward with her academic education and following her love of music she excelled developing her modern dance talents and mezzo-soprano voice. Sophie also made the courageous decision to join the Polish resistance organization -- a move that would put her life in constant jeopardy, especially during the 1944 Warsaw uprising.

Confessions of a Mediocre Widow

Or, How I Lost My Husband and My Sanity

Author: Catherine Tidd

Publisher: Sourcebooks, Inc.

ISBN: 140228523X

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 368

View: 7688

I spent my 11th wedding anniversary planning my husband's funeral. If I could just figure out how to make that rhyme, it would be the beginning of a great country song. Involuntarily single. That's the true story of where Catherine Tidd finds herself just three weeks after turning thirty-one. Widowed with three children under six years old, a rusty resume, no fix-it skills, and no clue how to live life as a widow, Catherine can't help but be a little exasperated with her dead husband for leaving her to deal with life on her own. Catherine's now in charge of her life in a way she never wanted to be, in a way that would have most of us reeling and numb. But she soon realizes that when you call the shots, you can make pedicures one of the stages of grief—and that moving forward might be more fun in a new sports car. Her honest Confessions of a Mediocre Widow is a glimpse into the heartbreaking and sometimes humorous world of a young woman who learns that it is possible to find joy in an unexpected life.

Vow

A Memoir of Marriage (and Other Affairs)

Author: Wendy Plump

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA

ISBN: 1608198928

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 272

View: 2996

Monogamy is one of the most important vows we make in our marriages. Yet it is a rare spouse who does not face some level of temptation through the allure of other people. Sometimes the issues are resolved before anyone is hurt. But sometimes, as with Wendy Plump's marriage, the fallout is confronted head-on-when not one but both spouses cheat. In early 2005, Wendy Plump found out about her husband's second family. They lived just a mile from the home she shared with her sons in the farmlands of Pennsylvania. But the discovery followed betrayals of her own, earlier in the marriage. Most discussions of infidelity focus on one side and therefore provide a skewed perspective. In this unique, 360-degree look, Plump delivers a searing, confessional story about the challenges of marriage that reads like a conversation between old friends. From the view of both betrayer and betrayed, Plump looks at the ordeal of finding out, the recovery, the ebb and flow of passion, the daily play of personality that can lead to fulfillment or disillusionment, family and friends and therapists, illicit attraction, the lovers, the lies, the alibis, even the undeniable pleasures affairs gave her as a younger woman. As she explores the wreckage of her own marriage, Plump offers a beautifully told narrative of hope, recovery, and wonder for the pull of couplehood that reawakens a belief in the value of fidelity and commitment.

Chickens in the Road

An Adventure in Ordinary Splendor

Author: Suzanne McMinn

Publisher: Harper Collins

ISBN: 0062223720

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 320

View: 5054

Suzanne McMinn, a former romance writer and founder of the popular blog chickensintheroad.com, shares the story of her search to lead a life of ordinary splendor in Chickens in the Road, her inspiring and funny memoir. Craving a life that would connect her to the earth and her family roots, McMinn packed up her three kids, left her husband and her sterile suburban existence behind, and moved to rural West Virginia. Amid the rough landscape and beauty of this rural mountain country, she pursues a natural lifestyle filled with chickens, goats, sheep—and no pizza delivery. With her new life comes an unexpected new love—"52," a man as beguiling and enigmatic as his nickname—a turbulent romance that reminds her that peace and fulfillment can be found in the wake of heartbreak. Coping with formidable challenges, including raising a trio of teenagers, milking stubborn cows, being snowed in with no heat, and making her own butter, McMinn realizes that she’s living a forty-something’s coming-of-age story. As she dares to become self-reliant and embrace her independence, she reminds us that life is a bold adventure—if we’re willing to live it. Chickens in the Road includes more than 20 recipes, craft projects, and McMinn’s photography, and features a special two-color design.

She Matters

A Life in Friendships

Author: Susanna Sonnenberg

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 1439190615

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 272

View: 4082

The New York Times called Susanna Sonnenberg “immensely gifted,” and Vogue, “scrupulously unsentimental.” Entertainment Weekly described Sonnenberg’s Her Last Death as “a bracing memoir about growing up rich and glamorous with a savagely inappropriate mother.” Now, Sonnenberg, with her unflinching eye and uncanny wisdom, has written a compulsively readable book about female friendship. T he best friend who broke up with you. The older girl at school you worshipped. The beloved college friend who changed. The friend you slept with. The friend who betrayed you. The friend you betrayed. Companions in travel, in discovery, in motherhood, in grief; the mentor, the model, the rescuer, the guide, the little sister. These have been the women in Susanna Sonnenberg’s life, friends tender, dominant, and crucial after her reckless mother gave her early lessons in womanhood. Searing and superbly written, Sonnenberg’s She Matters: A Life in Friendships illuminates the friendships that have influenced, nourished, inspired, and haunted her—and sometimes torn her apart. Each has its own lessons that Sonnenberg seeks to understand. Her method is investigative and ruminative; her result, fearlessly observed portraits of friendships that will inspire all readers to consider the complexities of their own relationships. This electric book is testimony to the emotional significance of the intense bonds between women, whether shattered, shaky, or unbreakable.

Wave

Author: Sonali Deraniyagala

Publisher: McClelland & Stewart

ISBN: 0771025386

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 208

View: 638

A brave, intimate, beautifully crafted memoir by a survivor of the tsunami that struck the Sri Lankan coast in 2004 and took her entire family. On December 26, Boxing Day, Sonali Deraniyagala, her English husband, her parents, her two young sons, and a close friend were ending Christmas vacation at the seaside resort of Yala on the south coast of Sri Lanka when a wave suddenly overtook them. She was only to learn later that this was a tsunami that devastated coastlines through Southeast Asia. When the water began to encroach closer to their hotel, they began to run, but in an instant, water engulfed them, Sonali was separated from her family, and all was lost. Sonali Deraniyagala has written an extraordinarily honest, utterly engrossing account of the surreal tragedy of a devastating event that all at once ended her life as she knew it and her journey since in search of understanding and redemption. It is also a remarkable portrait of a young family's life and what came before, with all the small moments and larger dreams that suddenly and irrevocably ended. From the Hardcover edition.

Four Funerals and a Wedding

Resilience in a Time of Grief

Author: Jill Smolowe

Publisher: She Writes Press

ISBN: 1938314735

Category: Family & Relationships

Page: 256

View: 3733

When journalist Jill Smolowe buried her husband, sister, mother, and mother-in-law in the space of seventeen months, she assumed that it was only a matter of time before she fell apart. That’s what all the movies and memoirs say will happen, after all. But when she never “lost it”—and when friends began to insist that her strength was amazing and unusual—she began to think there might be something freakish about her way of grieving, so she did what any self-respecting journalist would: she researched it. In Four Funerals and a Wedding, Smolowe jostles preconceptions about caregiving, defies clichés about losing loved ones, and reveals a stunning bottom line: far from being uncommon, resilience like hers is the norm among the recently bereaved. With humor and quiet wisdom, and with a lens firmly trained on what helped her tolerate so much sorrow and rebound from so much loss in her own life, she offers answers to questions we all confront in the face of loss, and ultimately reminds us all that grief is not only about endings—it’s about new beginnings.

In Lieu of Flowers

A Conversation for the Living

Author: Nancy Howard Cobb

Publisher: Pantheon

ISBN: 0307426335

Category: Religion

Page: 176

View: 9000

“Grieving is as natural as breathing, for if we have lived and loved, surely we will grieve. . . .” Nancy Cobb meets death in the most vital of places–in the lives of everyday people–and in doing so has found a way to infuse this darkest subject with light. Her candor and refreshing perspective make the deaths of those she has loved–and death itself–a subject to explore rather than to avoid. Cobb’s personal experiences become a point of departure for what amounts to a longer conversation about loss. In telling stories about encounters with grief, Cobb opens us up to our own experiences, and she encourages us to accept and honor the “divine intersections” where the living meet the dying. From the Trade Paperback edition.

The Starter Marriage and the Future of Matrimony

Author: Pamela Paul

Publisher: Random House Incorporated

ISBN: 0812966767

Category: Social Science

Page: 296

View: 7708

An in-depth study of the "starter marriage" phenomenon, involving couples who marry and divorce by the age of thirty, explores the changing face of marriage in America from a social and cultural perspective and discusses the hopes, motivations, and feelings toward the institution of marriage of young couples today. Reprint. 15,000 first printing.

From Granny Panties to Thongs

The Mourning After

Author: Penny Burke,Joan Pearlstein Dunn

Publisher: Createspace Independent Pub

ISBN: 9781482778380

Category: Family & Relationships

Page: 172

View: 7308

It has been said that, over the course of a lifetime, a person will use only a fraction of the brain's capacity to learn. This would also be true of the heart's boundless capacity to love. This book is a collection of true stories spoken from the hearts of widowed women. Each was eager to crack open the door to her private world, and allow us an entrance inside. Many of the ladies have never told these stories to anyone, including immediate family. Their individual reasons for wanting to contribute vary, but they all share a common thread... to empower other widowed women. They speak candidly about being the single one at the dinner table, their desire to date again, and even the first time between the sheets. This treasured book will offer insight to those who are curious about dating and moving forward. From Granny Panties to Thongs is the portable paperback cheerleader for widows who hope to one day find love again.

The Bridge Ladies

A Memoir

Author: Betsy Lerner

Publisher: HarperCollins

ISBN: 0062354485

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 320

View: 2071

A fifty-year-old Bridge game provides an unexpected way to cross the generational divide between a daughter and her mother. Betsy Lerner takes us on a powerfully personal literary journey, where we learn a little about Bridge and a lot about life. After a lifetime defining herself in contrast to her mother’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” generation, Lerner finds herself back in her childhood home, not five miles from the mother she spent decades avoiding. When Roz needs help after surgery, it falls to Betsy to take care of her. She expected a week of tense civility; what she got instead were the Bridge Ladies. Impressed by their loyalty, she saw something her generation lacked. Facebook was great, but it wouldn’t deliver a pot roast. Tentatively at first, Betsy becomes a regular at her mother’s Monday Bridge club. Through her friendships with the ladies, she is finally able to face years of misunderstandings and family tragedy, the Bridge table becoming the common ground she and Roz never had. By turns darkly funny and deeply moving, The Bridge Ladies is the unforgettable story of a hard-won—but never-too-late—bond between mother and daughter.