All Things Consoled
Publisher: McClelland & Stewart
Elizabeth Hay’s memoir about the drama of her parents’ end, and the longer drama of being their daughter. Also available as an ebook and as an audio book read by the author.
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About the Book
Jean and Gordon Hay were a formidable pair. She was a late-blooming artist and superlatively frugal; he was a proud and ambitious schoolteacher with a terrifying temper. As old age collides with the tragedy of living too long, this once ferociously independent pair become increasingly dependent on Lizzie, the so-called difficult child. Their lives change utterly and so does hers.
Philip Roth once said, “Old age is a massacre.” All Things Consoled takes you inside the massacre.
In this brave memoir, written with tough-minded candour, tenderness, and wit, Elizabeth Hay offers insight into the exquisite agony of a family’s dynamics — entrenched favouritism, sibling rivalries, grievances that last for decades, genuine admiration and deep love. In the end she reaches a more complete understanding of the most unforgettable characters she will ever know, the vivid giants in her life who were her parents.