Let's Take the Long Way Home: A Memoir of Friendship
Author: Gail Caldwell
Format: Kindle Edition
Publisher: Random House
Release Date: August 10, 2010
In Let’s Take the Long Walk Home, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Gail Caldwell has written a powerful and moving memoir about her coming-of-age in mid-life, and her extraordinary friendship with the author of Drinking: A Love Story, Caroline Knapp—fellow writers, AA members, dog lovers, and observers of life.
In her younger years, Caldwell defined herself by rebellion and independence, a passion for books, and an aversion to intimacy and a distrust of others. Then while living in Cambridge in her early 40s, “an age when the view from the hill can be clear and poignant both,” Caldwell adopts a rambunctious puppy named Clementine. On one of their bucolic walks, she meets Caroline and her dog, Lucille, and both women’s lives change forever.
Though they are more different than alike, these two fiercely private, independent women quickly relax into a friendship more profound than either of them expected, a friendship that will thrive on their shared secrets, including parallel struggles with alcoholism and loneliness. They grow increasingly inseparable until, in 2003, Caroline is diagnosed with Stage IV lung cancer. Caldwell writes: “It’s an old, old story: I had a friend and we shared everything, and then she died and so we shared that, too.”
In her signature exquisite prose, Caldwell mines the deepest levels of devotion and grief in this wise and affecting account about losing her best friend. Let’s Take the Long Way Home is also a celebration of life and all the little moments worth cherishing—and affirms why Gail Caldwell is rightly praised as one of our bravest and most honest literary voices.