Mattie Ryder is a marvelously funny, well-intentioned, religious, sarcastic, tender, angry, and broke recently divorced mother of two young children. Then she finds a small rubber blue shoe--the kind you might get from a gumball machine--and a few other trifles that were left years ago in her deceased father's car. They seem to hold the secrets to her messy upbringing, and as she and her brother follow these clues to uncover the mystery of their past, she begins to open her heart to her difficult, brittle mother and the father she thought she knew. And with that acceptance comes an opening up to the possibilities of romantic love.
In a disarming blend of everyday life and the sublime, of reverence and irreverence, and of humor and grace, Anne Lamott speaks directly to our most closely held concerns, bringing comfort to anyone--all of us--whose family life can feel overwhelming and uncontainable.
Lamott's formidable storytelling gifts have gained her a large and passionate following, and anybody who has experienced the delightful humor and the canny understanding of her previous work will be similarly charmed by Blue Shoe.
In her novels and her nonfiction, Anne Lamott writes about subjects that begin with capital letters (Alcoholism, Motherhood, Jesus). But armed with self-effacing humor and ruthless honesty — call it a lowercase approach to life's Big Questions — Lamott converts potential op-ed boilerplate into enchantment.
Los Angeles Times Book Review
If you're stuck in an elevator when the Big One hits, you couldn't do much better than be stranded there with Anne Lamott.
O, the Oprah Magazine
A dead-on charming book.
Time Out New York
Anne Lamott's Blue Shoe offers proof that her clever approach to craft does indeed produce superior fiction.
The New Yorker
Anne Lamott's is a cause for celebration. [Her] real genius lies in capturing the ineffable, describing not perfect moments but imperfect ones . . . perfectly. She is nothing short of miraculous.
San Francisco Chronicle Book Review
She can render almost any situation indecently, riotously funny, then turn it around on a dime and find the lesson in it . . . . She has written powerfully on some of life's most important subjects motherhood, work, faith. One can only wonder what she will write about next — and hope that she will do it very soon.
The Atlanta Constitution
Glorious. After reading Blue Shoe you feel as if you had sat on the kitchen floor and talked with the author late into the night about your lovers and God. That, in a nutshell, is the minor miracle of Lamott's writing.
Booklist - Carol Haggas
In a convoluted story filled with improbable plotlines and impossible circumstances, the chance discovery of a tiny blue plastic shoe, a child's prize from a gumball machine, leads to the unraveling of a long-buried family mystery and reveals the equally mysterious workings of faith, family, and friendship.
..... brilliantly captures the dilemma of a divorced woman from the so-called sandwich generation in her latest, a funny, poignant and occasionally gut-wrenching novel
Lamott infuses this peripatetic story of a woman's struggles after a divorce with the same quirky brand of Christianity she explored in her wildly popular memoir, Traveling Mercies (1999).
Starred Review. A breakout work. Funny, poignant and occasionally gut-wrenching.
Lamott's use of language allows us to see the smallest details from a fresh perspective, and her stories of motherhood and faith never fail to entertain and move us, all within the tightly wound ball of a good literary yarn.
Recent Reader Reviews
Rated of 5
I wanted to like Blue Shoe, because I have read two other books by Lamott, and admire her for her faith and her struggles in life. What I didn't like about Mattie in Blue Shoe was her inability to feel any empathy toward Pauline. She was able to... Read More
Rated of 5
too many characters; the plot was too confuleted with too many things going on. It became on ongoing soap opera; it truly is not one of my top five best noverls of the summer.
A teenage couple drive up to the Blessings estate late at night, leaving a box behind them. The estate caretaker finds a baby asleep in that box and decides he wants to keep her; and matriarch Lydia Blessing, for her own reasons, decides to help him.
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