Catastrophic Happiness: Finding Joy in Childhood's Messy Years Paperback – May 2, 2017
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"Ultimately the most fascinating character isn't her family, but Newman herself. This is because the book's force lies not in what it tells us about parenting, but in its sensitive portrayal of the blurring of self that happens after one has children. . . For Newman, this question of where she begins and ends is less of a riddle than a Buddhist koan. Wisely, she never tries to solve it. Her goal, in parenting and in writing, is only to figure out how to love from within it."―Elissa Strauss, New York Times Book Review
"Part of what makes Ms. Newman so good is her butterfly prose, colorful and light on its feet; part of it is her marvelous ability to reassure. It's affirming for parents to see their lives reflected back at them, and in a theme-park fun house no less, with all of the dreary bits made stretchy and silly. I adore her sideways sense of humor."
―Jennifer Senior, New York Times
"This is a book about mothers and children, or really, about how the job of mothering changes a woman, inevitably, irrevocably, and sometimes uncomfortably. Newman's self-awareness is what makes the book work; it's a portrait of striving toward a perfection that never existed, while loving the imperfection that surrounds us."
―Kate Tuttle, Boston Globe
"Winsome and funny."
"Catastrophic Happiness celebrates the absurdly lovely mess of the parenting years."
"You know those taunting posts that promise to make you "feel all the feels" only to leave you annoyed and let down? This is not one of those times. Catherine Newman's new essay collection on raising her two kids will make you laugh, cry, worry with her, and wish that you could make even the messiest, hardest, most crazy-making days with your children last just a little bit longer."
"Newman's stories are specific and funny, and she writes about the gamut of emotions we feel but can't always verbalize for ourselves. (She) takes her readers along for a fascinating, yet comfortingly familiar, ride of family life."
―Kristen Kemp, Parents Magazine
"A series of essays, which masterfully combine story and reflection...Newman's observations run the gamut from deep and profound to hilarious and true. Newman has a true gift for making the reader feel intimately connected to her family. In Catastrophic Happiness Newman has trapped lightning in a jar, allowing us all to admire its dazzle. In her book's short, lovely pages she captures life as a mother, life as a human being, life in general, in all of its gorgeous, complicated grandeur."―Lindsey Mead, Brain, Child
About the Author
- Item Weight : 6.4 ounces
- ISBN-10 : 031633748X
- ISBN-13 : 978-0316337489
- Paperback : 224 pages
- Dimensions : 5.5 x 0.63 x 8.25 inches
- Publisher : Back Bay Books; Reprint edition (May 2, 2017)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,092,634 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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This book should be required reading for all mothers everywhere. You will understand and relate to the all-consuming love and profound awe of this little person (or persons) who came out of your body and is every day becoming a more amazing human being. You will totally get the deep, gut-wrenching fear that anything (God forbid!) should ever happen to this precious human you birthed. But at some point, she comes to the totally rational conclusion that we mothers (and fathers, too) should cherish every moment with our amazing offspring, rather than living in terror that SOMETHING COULD HAPPEN. A roller coaster ride of love, fear, happiness, a few tears as we watch our precious children grow before our eyes. Loved every page!!!