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Tell Me More
Cover of Tell Me More
Tell Me More
Stories About the 12 Hardest Things I'm Learning to Say
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • A story-driven collection of essays on the twelve powerful phrases we use to sustain our relationships, from the bestselling author of Glitter and Glue and The Middle Place
“Kelly Corrigan takes on all the big, difficult questions here, with great warmth and courage.”—Glennon Doyle
NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY REAL SIMPLE AND BUSTLE
It’s a crazy idea: trying to name the phrases that make love and connection possible. But that’s just what Kelly Corrigan has set out to do here. In her New York Times bestselling memoirs, Corrigan distilled our core relationships to their essences, showcasing a warm, easy storytelling style. Now, in Tell Me More, she’s back with a deeply personal, unfailingly honest, and often hilarious examination of the essential phrases that turn the wheel of life.
In “I Don’t Know,” Corrigan wrestles to make peace with uncertainty, whether it’s over invitations that never came or a friend’s agonizing infertility. In “No,” she admires her mother’s ability to set boundaries and her liberating willingness to be unpopular. In “Tell Me More,” a facialist named Tish teaches her something important about listening. And in “I Was Wrong,” she comes clean about her disastrous role in a family fight—and explains why saying sorry may not be enough. With refreshing candor, a deep well of empathy, and her signature desire to understand “the thing behind the thing,” Corrigan swings between meditations on life with a preoccupied husband and two mercurial teenage daughters to profound observations on love and loss.
With the streetwise, ever-relatable voice that defines Corrigan’s work, Tell Me More is a moving and meaningful take on the power of the right words at the right moment to change everything.
Praise for Tell Me More
“It is such a comfort just knowing that Kelly Corrigan exists: she is somehow both wise and self-deprecating; funny but unafraid of pain; frank but gentle. She is the sister/mother/best friend we all wish we could have—and because of this big-hearted book, we all get to.”—Ariel Levy, author of The Rules Do Not Apply
“With full-bodied humor and radical sensitivity, Kelly Corrigan transforms the mundane pain of life into a necessary spiritual text of sorts, one that reminds us that we have the right to grieve but the obligation to be grateful. This book will remind you that you are human—and of the fragile loveliness of being so.”—Lena Dunham
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • A story-driven collection of essays on the twelve powerful phrases we use to sustain our relationships, from the bestselling author of Glitter and Glue and The Middle Place
“Kelly Corrigan takes on all the big, difficult questions here, with great warmth and courage.”—Glennon Doyle
NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY REAL SIMPLE AND BUSTLE
It’s a crazy idea: trying to name the phrases that make love and connection possible. But that’s just what Kelly Corrigan has set out to do here. In her New York Times bestselling memoirs, Corrigan distilled our core relationships to their essences, showcasing a warm, easy storytelling style. Now, in Tell Me More, she’s back with a deeply personal, unfailingly honest, and often hilarious examination of the essential phrases that turn the wheel of life.
In “I Don’t Know,” Corrigan wrestles to make peace with uncertainty, whether it’s over invitations that never came or a friend’s agonizing infertility. In “No,” she admires her mother’s ability to set boundaries and her liberating willingness to be unpopular. In “Tell Me More,” a facialist named Tish teaches her something important about listening. And in “I Was Wrong,” she comes clean about her disastrous role in a family fight—and explains why saying sorry may not be enough. With refreshing candor, a deep well of empathy, and her signature desire to understand “the thing behind the thing,” Corrigan swings between meditations on life with a preoccupied husband and two mercurial teenage daughters to profound observations on love and loss.
With the streetwise, ever-relatable voice that defines Corrigan’s work, Tell Me More is a moving and meaningful take on the power of the right words at the right moment to change everything.
Praise for Tell Me More
“It is such a comfort just knowing that Kelly Corrigan exists: she is somehow both wise and self-deprecating; funny but unafraid of pain; frank but gentle. She is the sister/mother/best friend we all wish we could have—and because of this big-hearted book, we all get to.”—Ariel Levy, author of The Rules Do Not Apply
“With full-bodied humor and radical sensitivity, Kelly Corrigan transforms the mundane pain of life into a necessary spiritual text of sorts, one that reminds us that we have the right to grieve but the obligation to be grateful. This book will remind you that you are human—and of the fragile loveliness of being so.”—Lena Dunham
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Excerpts-
  • From the book It’s Like This

    There was no real reason for it to fall apart that morning. And, in fact, it didn’t. I did.

    I could say it was because my dad—­whom I adored to the point of absurdity—­had died sixty-­eight days before. I could say that watching him shrink into silence did me in, that grief bled me dry, that I was no longer a match for ordinary family life, that my radio station had lost the signal, the drone of static broken only by the occasional reception of two clear thoughts: He’s gone and Please give him back.

    But the truth is that I’m always teetering between a mature acceptance of life’s immutables and a childish railing against the very same. In the time it takes to get the mail, I can slide from sanguine and full of purpose to pissed off and fuming. As for perspective, there’s a Hertz customer service rep in Des Moines who could release a tape of my recent “feedback” that would make the Internet break. All of which is not to say that I can’t spot the difference between trivial and tragic. I can. I do. I genuflect in gratitude for my health, my husband, my kids, my central heating. I just can’t stay bowed down. I keep popping back up, saying things like, Does anyone else’s back hurt? In those moments, I’m not that much closer to maintaining an adult frame of reference than I was the day I got my first period.

    Speaking of menstruation, lack of perspective, and fits of irrationality, I have two teenage daughters. Georgia is sixteen, with Vidal Sassoon hair, almond-­brown eyes, flat feet, and one killer dimple. She likes lacrosse and Snapchat and prefers precalculus and chemistry to the humanities, where there are too many possible answers. Her interest in me hinges on allowance and rides; offering more, like an opinion, visibly chafes her. Her independence tortures and impresses me. She is a world-­class procrastinator who brushes her wet hair in the car on the way to the party and waits until we pull up to practice to put on her cleats. She is cool on a dance floor and sometimes, when she’s telling me a story, I am as captivated by her as I have ever been by another human being.

    Claire is fourteen, has blond hair that turns brown in the winter, size 12 shoes, dark blue eyes she gets from her father, and a smile that can be seen from space. She plays volleyball and basketball because we make her, lacrosse because she likes being outside in the spring. Without our interference, her extracurricular hours would be dedicated to the lyrics of Lin-­Manuel Miranda, decorating baked goods with special nozzles she found on Amazon, and throwing theme parties, six a year, pegged to the holidays. She designs her own invitations, finds snack and décor ideas on BuzzFeed, and plugs in a $14 disco light to energize the dance floor that is our deck. In fifth grade, she got every single answer right on a standardized test that was given over four days, but that doesn’t mean she can spell “skedule” or “arguement.” We like to think she might be some sort of creative genius, but anything is possible.

    When they’re together, the girls are either watching reruns of The Office, ignoring each other in favor of whatever’s on their cellphone, or squabbling over how to say Wingardium Leviosa. Sometimes, the way they go back and forth reminds me of the way Edward and I bicker, and I feel sure that if only we had modeled bipartisanship, our children would be better and happier. Once or twice a year, they do a Bollywood routine they learned from Just Dance and I’m reminded of the days when being...
About the Author-
  • Kelly Corrigan has been called “the voice of her generation” by O: The Oprah Magazine and “the poet laureate of the ordinary” by HuffPost. She is the author of the New York Times bestsellers The Middle Place, Lift, and Glitter and Glue. She is also the creative director of The Nantucket Project and host of their conversation series about what matters most. She lives near Oakland, California, with her husband, Edward Lichty, and her daughters, Georgia and Claire.
Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    August 28, 2017
    In this brisk and moving memoir, Corrigan (The Middle Place) explores the language and terrain of intimacy, delving into some of the most difficult and significant things people say to one another. In 12 brief essays, Corrigan describes the ways in which phrases such as “tell me more” and “I know” have shaped her closest relationships. In the title essay, Corrigan slowly raises the stakes, with masterly results (when her sixth-grade daughter calls to talk of an incident in school, Corrigan simply says, “Tell me about it,” rather than something more accusative, and her daughter divulges everything). She also contemplates the many meanings of “I love you” (to a sibling, it could be “Even though we hardly agree about a thing, including who should be president... I love you”) and writes about how the phrase “I know” offers the salve of empathy when no other words will do. At the heart of the memoir is Corrigan’s examination of her friendship with Liz, who died from ovarian cancer. “Every important conversation I have, for the rest of my life, will have a little bit to do with her,” Corrigan writes. At one point, she considers the truth that sometimes only silence can properly evoke. The essays are impactful, and Corrigan offers solid wisdom throughout.

  • Library Journal

    September 15, 2017

    From the author of New York Times best sellers like Glitter and Glue, here's a book on being a better person organized around a series of simple sentences--"Tell Me More," "Onward," "I Was Wrong," and more.

    Copyright 2017 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Kirkus

    November 15, 2017
    Ruminations about the power of 12 of life's essential phrases and the difficulty in learning to say them out loud.Corrigan (Glitter and Glue, 2013, etc.) may be a bestselling author, but she doesn't always know the right thing to say, especially when it comes to the ones she loves most. In the collection's titular essay, the author struggles to communicate with her teenage daughter until a childhood friend encourages her to do less talking and more listening, a strategy she implements when her father is diagnosed with terminal cancer. In "I Know," Corrigan's experience volunteering at a camp for children who have lost someone to cancer reminds her how comforting physical company--rather than apology--can be during times of tragedy and loss. "I Was Wrong," the funniest entry in the collection, uses a dog, an unflushed toilet, and a parental meltdown to highlight the power and near-impossible difficulty of admitting personal fault. In the deeply affecting entry "Onward," moving on from tragedy takes on a new weight. With heartfelt humor and penetrating insight, Corrigan uses the pain, anguish, failure, and occasional successes in her life to explore the vital connection between the words we say and the relationships we develop, both with the people around us and ourselves. Punctuated with her signature warmth and unflinching honesty, her introspective musings gush with empathy for every partner, parent, child, or friend who has said the wrong thing at the wrong time. At times laugh-out-loud funny but overwhelmingly bittersweet, this brief book spans time and experience to drive home a seemingly simple but significant message: finding the right words is a lifelong journey. Other phrases include "I Love You" and "No Words at All."Moving and deeply personal, Corrigan's portraits of love and loss urge readers to speak more carefully and hold on tighter to the people they love.

    COPYRIGHT(2017) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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Stories About the 12 Hardest Things I'm Learning to Say
Kelly Corrigan
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