Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake

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[Quindlen] serves up generous portions of her wise, commonsensical, irresistibly quotable take on life. . . . What Nora Ephron does for body image and Anne Lamott for spiritual neuroses, Quindlen achieves on the home front. ”NPR   In this irresistible memoir, Anna Quindlen writes about a woman s life, from childhood memories to manic motherhood to middle age, using the events of her life to illuminate ours. Considering ”and celebrating ”everything from marriage, girlfriends, our mothers, parenting, faith, loss, to all the stuff in our closets, and more, Quindlen says for us here what we may wish we could have said ourselves. As she did in her beloved New York Times columns, and in A Short Guide to a Happy Life, Quindlen uses her past, present, and future to explore what matters most to women at different ages. Quindlen talks about   Marriage: A safety net of small white lies can be the bedrock of a successful marriage. You wouldn t believe how cheaply I can do a kitchen renovation.   Girlfriends: Ask any woman how she makes it through the day, and she may mention her calendar, her to-do lists, her babysitter. But if you push her on how she really makes it through her day, she will mention her girlfriends.   Our bodies: I’ve finally recognized my body for what it is: a personality-delivery system, designed expressly to carry my character from place to place, now and in the years to come. Parenting: Being a parent is not transactional. We do not get what we give. It is the ultimate pay-it-forward endeavor: We are good parents not so they will be loving enough to stay with us but so they will be strong enough to leave us.   Candid, funny, and moving, Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake is filled with the sharp insights and revealing observations that have long confirmed Quindlen s status as America’s laureate of real life.   Classic Quindlen, at times witty, at times wise, and always of her time. ”The Miami Herald   [A] pithy, get-real memoir. ”Booklist  Look for special features inside. Join the Random House Reader’s Circle for author chats and more.

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