A heartwarming and heartbreaking story of friendship and grief.

WHEN HARRY MET MINNIE

A TRUE STORY OF LOVE AND FRIENDSHIP

A poignant memoir recounts how two dog lovers bonded over their shared affection for an aging bull terrier.

In July 2016, longtime CBS News and CBS Sunday Morning correspondent Teichner was shopping at a farmers market in her Manhattan neighborhood, accompanied by her “sleek glamor-puss” rescue bull terrier Minnie, when she met an old dog-walking acquaintance with an unusual request. His friend Carol, who lived alone aside from her 11-year-old bull terrier, Harry, was dying of liver cancer and desperate to find a new home for Harry. The author, whose dog Goose had died six months earlier, leaving Minnie and her owner bereft, was intrigued and agreed to meet with Carol. Circling each other, both suspicious, they worked into a deep friendship during the little time that Carol had left, all the while acting like “two overly protective mothers trying to arrange a marriage.” With humor and deep affection, Teichner recounts the play dates, sleepovers, doggie-cam observations, trips to a church “Blessing of the Animals,” where the two animals showed “zero desire to be blessed,” and all the other lead-ups to the eventual transfer. Emails between the two women add wry wit to the tale, which is definitely a New York story, with all the rich details of life on the sidewalks and streets, among dogs and dog owners. It's also a story of relatively privileged lives, despite Carol’s illness. Readers may be shocked by the thousands of dollars the two women routinely spent on their dogs or by the fact that Teichner has had live-in au pairs for her series of dogs for the past 30 years. But that privilege doesn't preclude loss, and the most touching moments of the memoir show Teichner delicately but firmly confronting the deaths of Carol and, later, Harry.

A heartwarming and heartbreaking story of friendship and grief.

Pub Date: Feb. 2, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-250-21253-5

Page Count: 256

Publisher: Celadon Books

Review Posted Online: Nov. 11, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2020

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Fans will blissfully revel in the intimate if restlessly delivered details in this perceptive memoir.

THE BEAUTY OF LIVING TWICE

The celebrated actor reflects on a life of success, activism, and cleansing self-discovery.

Stone (b. 1958) begins in the hospital in 2001, when a severe brain injury nearly ended her life. She then backtracks to her youth growing up with three siblings in the “snowbelt” of northwestern Pennsylvania. She excelled at school but distanced herself from an aloof, damaged mother, a woman who never had a chance “to imagine a life where she could be whatever she chose.” As a teenager, Stone waited tables while entering local beauty pageants, which led to Manhattan modeling jobs and a move to Hollywood in the early 1980s. The author breaks down her iconic roles in Basic Instinct and Casino. Regarding the controversial interrogation scene in the former, she writes, “there have been many points of view…but since I’m the one with the vagina in question, let me say: the other points of view are bullshit.” While sharing a host of madcap episodes throughout an eventful life, she also proudly describes her impressive “life of service,” her Buddhist faith, and the adoptions of three sons. She also contributes juicier stories about co-hosting the 2008 Cannes Film Festival with Madonna and the controversy that erupted following a stray comment to reporters. Stone then moves on to her “second life,” when she endured “the loss of all things we call dear,” including her father, marriage, health, and financial security. Though the memoir is unevenly, frenetically narrated, that will only deter readers unfamiliar with Stone’s persona. Delivering a barrage of self-reflective anecdotes, she is consistently candid, alternatingly tender and feisty, and always witty. In conclusion, Stone offers thoughts on wisdom, modesty, and vulnerability as well as some startling admissions about “being sexually abused throughout my life.” Encouragingly, Stone has reconciled with her mother. “Today,” she writes, “my mother and I are at the beginning of our relationship.”

Fans will blissfully revel in the intimate if restlessly delivered details in this perceptive memoir.

Pub Date: March 30, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-525-65676-0

Page Count: 256

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: March 21, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2021

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Doyle offers another lucid, inspiring chronicle of female empowerment and the rewards of self-awareness and renewal.

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UNTAMED

More life reflections from the bestselling author on themes of societal captivity and the catharsis of personal freedom.

In her third book, Doyle (Love Warrior, 2016, etc.) begins with a life-changing event. “Four years ago,” she writes, “married to the father of my three children, I fell in love with a woman.” That woman, Abby Wambach, would become her wife. Emblematically arranged into three sections—“Caged,” “Keys,” “Freedom”—the narrative offers, among other elements, vignettes about the soulful author’s girlhood, when she was bulimic and felt like a zoo animal, a “caged girl made for wide-open skies.” She followed the path that seemed right and appropriate based on her Catholic upbringing and adolescent conditioning. After a downward spiral into “drinking, drugging, and purging,” Doyle found sobriety and the authentic self she’d been suppressing. Still, there was trouble: Straining an already troubled marriage was her husband’s infidelity, which eventually led to life-altering choices and the discovery of a love she’d never experienced before. Throughout the book, Doyle remains open and candid, whether she’s admitting to rigging a high school homecoming court election or denouncing the doting perfectionism of “cream cheese parenting,” which is about “giving your children the best of everything.” The author’s fears and concerns are often mirrored by real-world issues: gender roles and bias, white privilege, racism, and religion-fueled homophobia and hypocrisy. Some stories merely skim the surface of larger issues, but Doyle revisits them in later sections and digs deeper, using friends and familial references to personify their impact on her life, both past and present. Shorter pieces, some only a page in length, manage to effectively translate an emotional gut punch, as when Doyle’s therapist called her blooming extramarital lesbian love a “dangerous distraction.” Ultimately, the narrative is an in-depth look at a courageous woman eager to share the wealth of her experiences by embracing vulnerability and reclaiming her inner strength and resiliency.

Doyle offers another lucid, inspiring chronicle of female empowerment and the rewards of self-awareness and renewal.

Pub Date: March 10, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-9848-0125-8

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Dial Books

Review Posted Online: Dec. 22, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2020

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