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They Left Us Everything: A Memoir (Hardcover)
A warm, heartfelt memoir of family, loss, and a house jam-packed with decades of goods and memories.
After almost twenty years of caring for elderly parents first for their senile father, and then for their cantankerous ninety-three-year old mother author Plum Johnson and her three younger brothers have finally fallen to their middle-aged knees with conflicted feelings of grief and relief. Now they must empty and sell the beloved family home, twenty-three rooms bulging with history, antiques, and oxygen tanks. Plum thought: How tough will that be? I know how to buy garbage bags.
But the task turns out to be much harder and more rewarding than she ever imagined. Items from childhood trigger difficult memories of her eccentric family growing up in the 1950s and 60s, but unearthing new facts about her parents helps her reconcile those relationships, with a more accepting perspective about who they were and what they valued.
They Left Us Everything is a funny, touching memoir about the importance of preserving family history to make sense of the past, and nurturing family bonds to safeguard the future.
About the Author
Plum Johnson is an award-winning writer who lives in Toronto. She had an American mother and a English father whose compromise was to raise their children as Canadians. Growing up on the shores of Lake Ontario, they made annual pilgrimages by car down Route 15 to Richmond, Virginia, stopping to read every historical marker along the way. They Left Us Everything was longlisted for the Leacock Medal for Humour, shortlisted for the Kobo Emerging Writer Prize, and was the winner of the RBC Taylor Prize for nonfiction.