The Rules of Inheritance

The Rules of Inheritance


By (author) Claire Bidwell Smith

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Paperback $16.31
  • Publisher: Hudson Street Press
  • Format: Hardback | 298 pages
  • Dimensions: 160mm x 229mm x 28mm | 544g
  • Publication date: 2 February 2012
  • Publication City/Country: New York, NY
  • ISBN 10: 1594630887
  • ISBN 13: 9781594630880
  • Sales rank: 146,534

Product description

A 2012 Books for a Better Life nominee A resonant memoir of the ways untimely good-byes echo through the years by a writer who has considered every nuance of grief. At age fourteen, Claire Bidwell Smith-an only child- learned that both of her parents had cancer. The fear of becoming a family of one before she came of age compels Claire to make a series of fraught choices, set against the glittering backdrop of New York and Los Angeles - and the pall of regret. When the inevitable happens, and Claire is alone in the world, she is inconsolable at the revelation that suddenly she is no one's special person. It is only when Claire eventually falls in love, marries, and becomes a mother that she emerges from the fog of grief. Defying a conventional framework, this story is told using the five stages of grief as a window into Smith's experience. As in the very best memoirs, the author's powerful and exquisite writing renders personal events into universal experience.

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Author information

Claire Bidwell Smith is a Los Angeles-based writer and editor. She writes for "The Huffington Post, Blackbook, Yoga Journal, Chicago Public Radio," and the award-winning blog

Review quote

"This beautiful memoir is about what we inherit-the love as well as the sorrow and loss that are an inevitable part of human connection. In lucid, unsentimental prose, Claire Bidwell Smith maps out the story of her abrupt and rocky coming-of-age with just the right amount of intimacy and distance. This book will stay with me." -Dani Shapiro, "New York Times" bestselling author of "Devotion"