The book is Too Close to the Falls and is an autobiography by a now-Canadian writer/psychologist, Catherine Gildiner, depicting her childhood years in Lewiston, NY. I’m reading it for my amazing Book Club—and I won’t lie: I wasn’t terribly excited to read another this-is-my-real-life-in-chapter-form (with all-the-chapters-taking-place-between-years-4-and-10, no less!!). But it was Book Club, so I waded gamely into the fray.
And, lo, I met this charming, irascible, feisty little kid who had any number of unusual encounters in early 50’s America. She stood up for herself and for every other decent human being in her life. And I just couldn’t shake the impression that I was meeting young Deb in full regalia.
Now I know this isn’t Deb’s story, but one of the things I’ve most loved about this blog is meeting that child of Deb’s yore—the one in the stories she shares with us sometimes. I’ve been surprised and delighted by insights into Deb’s young life—those childhood experiences that full-grown friends often don’t share with each other (we have so many other things to talk about, right?). And so I’ve been even more delighted and excited to read this adorable book.
And as I am reading, I’m also getting that certain feeling that, by odd osmosis, I’m getting to know and love our darling Deb even more. This is what they mean when they call someone “spirited”. It’s the best of all things human and humane. Thanks, Catherine Gildiner. And, of course, thanks my dear Deb.
Deb: I am going to use my Chapters Christmas gift cards and go get this book ASAP. In the meantime I am going to love you for thinking of my life when you read this book. Sweet sweet sweetness. I can’t wait. Remind me to blog about the time I thought my childhood life was in a Penguin book. I have been searching for that book ever since. It is fascinating!