Like Family

Growing Up in Other People's Houses, a Memoir

ebook / ISBN-13: 9780316082662

USD: $9.99  /  CAD: $11.99

ON SALE: September 26th 2009

Genre: Nonfiction / Biography & Autobiography / Women


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An astonishing memoir that "demonstrates the true meaning of family" from the author of The Paris Wife and When the Stars Go Dark, detailing the years Paula McLain and her two sisters spent as foster children after being abandoned by both parents in California in the early 1970s and (Chicago Tribune). 

As wards of the State, the sisters spent the next 14 years moving from foster home to foster home. The dislocations, confusions, and odd pleasures of an unrooted life form the basis of one of the most compelling memoirs in recent years — a book the tradition of Jo Ann Beard's The Boys of My Youth and Mary Karr's The Liar's Club.

McLain's beautiful writing and limber voice capture the intense loneliness, sadness, and determination of a young girl both on her own and responsible, with her siblings, for staying together as a family.

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Reader Reviews


"Astonishing....With her poetic gift for language, McLain demonstrates the true meaning of family."—Chicago Tribune
"Ms. McLain's close observation of the sisters' perils jumps with life and wry merriment. They take their pleasures and their sorrows as they arrive; even their times of desolation are narrated in language that conveys a kind of ragged glory - the tattered flag of their kinship still waves!"—Paula Fox, author of Borrowed Finery
"What makes Like Family so remarkable are not the peculiar circumstances of Paula McLain's childhood but the depth of understanding that she brings to those circumstances, and the beautiful prose in which she renders that understanding. Seldom have I seen so vividly evoked the need to belong to some, any, kind of family and the painful negotiations that time brings to even our closest intimacies."—Margot Livesey, author of Mercury and The Flight of Gemma Hardy
"Like Family is a personal triumph... McLain's story is one of nobility and of the strength of a young woman's spirit."—Wisconsin State Journal
"A powerful and haunting memoir."—Anne Martino, Ann Arbor News
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