From the Inside Flap
Life is hard. Sometimes, really hard. Sometimes it all falls apart at once and everything is the worst. And then something great happens! And that should fix it, right?
This book is about why the answer to that question is . . . well . . . complicated.
When Nora McInerny’s husband Aaron died of brain cancer just weeks after she lost her second pregnancy and her father, she was officially having the Worst Year Ever. But her toddler son Ralph, her Midwestern sense of getting on with it, her oddball sense of humor, and her writing kept her putting one foot in front of the other. Being in absolute and utter shock didn’t hurt, either. One result was It’s Okay to Laugh, her memoir written at a fever pitch in the six months after Aaron’s death, a national bestseller that earned Nora the mantle “Anne Lamott for the emoji generation.” On the heels of the book came her award-winning podcast, Terrible, Thanks for Asking, called “a gift to be able to listen to” by the New York Times; a TED Talk; and writing gigs for Elle, Time, Slate, Vox, BuzzFeed, and lots of other cool places.
In under a year, Nora had become one of the biggest (and youngest) voices on living honestly and messily through grief.
And then something really crazy happened. One night while sitting around a backyard bonfire at a friend’s house, she met a guy who literally fell out of his chair introducing himself. And against all notions of what would be considered kosher or cautious or wise, in a few months she was pregnant, and she and Matthew were figuring out how to blend their families and just how new love and new grief feel when they’re braided together in a new relationship.
You see, life has a million different ways to kick you right in the chops. We lose love, lose jobs, lose our sense of self. But in the wake of loss, we get to assemble something new from whatever is left behind. Some circles call finding happiness after loss “Chapter 2”–the continuation of something else. Today, Nora is remarried, and mothers four children across an age gap of fifteen years, a family that is blended together from the remnants of families that no longer are.
In No Happy Endings, Nora offers a tragicomic exploration of the tension between finding happiness and holding space for the unhappy experiences that have shaped us.
No Happy Endings is a book for people living life after life has fallen apart. While she loves her life now, she still loves the husband she lost. Sometimes that makes her feel guilty, but mostly it makes her feel that her life is just . . . stretched wide enough to hold everything in it. With her singular style full of unique perspective and a voice that makes incomprehensible tragedy at least somewhat comprehensible–or if not that, funny, and even joyful–Nora shows us in these pages that there may be no happy endings–but there can be new beginnings.
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