A disarmingly tender, funny and honest memoir of grief, illness and finding your way in life.
In 2014 I moved back to the United States after living abroad for fourteen years, my whole adult life, because my father was dying from cancer.
Six weeks after I arrived in New York City, my father died.
Six months after that I learned that I had inherited the gene that would cause me cancer too.
When Jean Hannah Edelstein’s world overturned she was forced to confront some of the big questions in life: how do we cope with grief? How does living change when we realise we’re not invincible? Does knowing our likely fate make it harder or easier to face the future? How do you motivate yourself to go on your OkCupid date when you’re struggling with your own mortality?
Written in her inimitable, wry and insightful voice, Edelstein’s memoir is by turns heart-breaking, hopeful and also disarmingly funny. This Really Isn’t About You is a book about finding your way in life. Which is to say, it’s a book about discovering you are not really in control of that at all.
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“Jean Hannah Edelstein is one of the most brilliant writers of her generation, as witty, wry and unsentimental as Nora Ephron. This is a magnificent book, about families, mortality, love and the hard, necessary work of becoming an adult.”
“A magnificent, beautifully written memoir. Unsentimental but heartbreaking, the voice – true and clear. Brilliant.”
“Never sentimental, this memoir is by turns extremely funny and extremely sad; Edelstein is a wonderful writer, and this is a stunning book.”