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Forward From Here: Leaving Middle Age--and Other Unexpected Adventures Paperback – Bargain Price, April 7, 2009


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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In this collection of poignant essays, Lindbergh (No More Words) struggles to extract meaning, and even solace, from an imperfect everyday reality. Heading her list of concerns is her looming 60th birthday and the change and decline that it symbolizes-the departure from home of her children, a benign brain tumor, the therapeutic drug culture that is the hallmark of old age in America. Despite her anxieties and losses, she manages to find in fragile, flawed things-a broken sea shell, a heron that's lost a leg-a kind of beauty. Lindbergh also explores her fraught relationship with her father, the aviator Charles Lindbergh, "an angry, restless, opinionated perfectionist" whose "very presence alternately crowded and startled everyone," and grapples with the discovery that he had secretly fathered seven children-her half siblings-in Europe. Set mostly amid the tranquil surroundings of her Vermont farmstead, Reeve's essays are suffused with a sly, gentle humor that supports her quiet resolve to carry on. (Apr.)
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Review

"Polygamy and other family matters are riotously chronicled in [Reeve Lindbergh's] new book and third memoir, in which she writes about the view from age 60 and beyond, with one eyebrow firmly arched." -- Penelope Green, The New York Times

"In this collection of poignant essays, Lindbergh struggles to extract meaning, and even solace, from an imperfect everyday reality.... suffused with a sly, gentle humor that supports her quiet resolve to carry on." -- Publishers Weekly

"[A] winsome meditation on aging and other matters...largeness of heart and generosity of spirit enrich Lindbergh's life, and the pages of this book." -- Judith Viorst, The Washington Post Book World
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster; Reprint edition (April 7, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743275128
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743275125
  • ASIN: B002PJ4J0G
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.4 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,965,928 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

I enjoy biographies the most anyway and have liked all her writings!
Lucille Burrill
Reeve Lindberg has a wonderful way of looking at what is happening in her life with thoughtfullness and a fine, "quirky" sense of humor that appeals to me.
Joanne Smyth
Reeve Lindbergh writes at least as well as her mother, Anne Morrow Lindbergh, perhaps better.
Eve D. Hill

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

37 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Deborah A. Broeker on April 21, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Dear Reeve,

I am hoping that you read the Amazon.com reviews, because I know of no other way to reach you and tell you how much I loved your book.

I have to preface this review by telling you that I was a HUGE fan of your mother's writing, starting in the early 70's with her published diaries, and then on through her other works that had been published previously (Gift from the Sea, etc.) You clearly have her gift for accessing your innermost thoughts and feelings and expressing them so clearly and adroitly on paper. If there is a heaven, I'm sure she is looking down upon you with great pride. Perhaps to REALLY appreciate your writing, one must understand the history of the Lindbergh family - the secretiveness, shyness, and fear of publicity. All understandable, of course, in light of what your parents went through in the early 1930's.

I loved most of your essays - especially the ones about your brain tumor, getting older, and your friends and family. As I said, you have the gift of your mother's "immediacy" - showing the reader what is IN your thoughts, and not talking ABOUT them. Thank you for the chapter in which you reveal your reactions to the news of your father's other families - I had wondered for several years since the news broke about your step-siblings in Europe how you had reacted. Having read your other books ("No More Words" is my favorite), I had a sense that you would "step up to the plate" and face the issue head on, rather than retreat into bitterness and melancholy afterwards. I will not reveal your actions here (so that other readers may see for themselves first-hand how you handled it), but suffice it to say that your character and courage is displayed in full measure throughout the book.

I, too, miss your mother....
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33 of 34 people found the following review helpful By mcHaiku on May 2, 2008
Format: Hardcover
"Forward From Here" is written in good humor tinged with irony: anecdotes about aging, insights about the natural world and observations on how the 'dailiness' of our lives can help us outlast any despair. The author, Reeve Lindbergh, combines revelation and commercial instincts. but with the philosophizing that comes from maturity.

"Lindbergh" falls in the category of a never-to-be-forgotten name. At the age of five I was terrified by the stares of strangers in slow-moving vehicles, all because of the kidnapping of the Lindbergh baby. Newsmen seized on the frightening, sorrowful story of the loss of the baby with a voracious appetite almost equal to today's media.

Reeve Lindbergh discusses her "fraught relationship" with her famous father. I am no psychologist but it has long seemed to me that explorers of this planet have a corner on certain personality traits. My own uncle who explored Antarctica in the late 20's & 30's, and much later as a climatologist in the Arctic, seemed to have a 'solitariness' not found in most men. Perhaps this develops as a bi-product of celebrity status?

The author learned thirty years after his death that "Lindy" - - the nation's hero & her famous father, had fathered three other families in Germany & elsewhere in Europe. The reader is confronted by the sad reality of selfishness, of which we are all guilty to a degree. Reeve Lindbergh writes of the "unutterable loneliness" her father must have endured in his later years. It is a moving experience to read her conclusions about her parent's flawed personality.

Readers will be equally moved and grateful for other chapters of her book. We can all wish to age with the grace that helps us "not to utter unkind words" - - and further, to "love the reality of wrinkles"!
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Story Circle Book Reviews on June 4, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Forward from Here is Reeve Lindbergh's best book yet. Funny, tender, compassionate, profound, Lindbergh reveals herself to be an accomplished and graceful writer--something you might already suspect if you have read her earlier books, Under a Wing (about growing up Lindbergh, with two extraordinary parents, Charles Lindbergh and Anne Morrow Lindbergh) and No More Words (about her mother's decline and death). In this book, Lindbergh (an author of books for children) explores the happiness and hazards she encounters as she journeys from middle age into her sixties--the "youth of old age." "I might as well enjoy the view as I travel along from my birth to death, inhabiting this being I call myself," she writes. "I may be a passenger on the journey, or I may be the vehicle itself, but I'm definitely not the driver. I'm here, but I'm not in charge."

Maybe, but she's not just along for the ride. In this collection of nineteen personal essays, she laughs at the pleasures of her rural Vermont life--the joys of reading, writing, raising lambs and boys and encountering turtles--and takes a sober look at the challenges of living in an aging body. The vanities of youth are gone (she quotes her beloved sister Anne, now dead of cancer: "After a certain age, there's only so good you can look.") and she is making "friends with reality." Not sure that she wants to wear purple, with a red hat that doesn't go, she looks back on a time when she wore lavender eyeshadow and white lipstick (do you remember doing that? I do) and laughs at herself. In fact, she knows that's the best thing to do: "laugh at myself when laughter is called for, weep when I need to, and feel all of it, every bit of it, as much as I can for as long as I can.
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