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David Sedaris’s newest collection of essays reaches back to his childhood, through his adulthood with his sisters and parents, and into the present, his mother long dead and his father still holding on, the pandemic wreaking havoc on every corner of life. The essays are darkly humorous—Sedaris never shies away from the absurdities that accompany life’s most arduous moments—but there’s a great deal of wisdom and stark, unsparing emotion here too. Sedaris grieves over his father’s eventual death; dissects and analyzes his sister Tiffany’s suicide; reflects on family vacations that he views with new clarity. Who’s to say each vacation, each interaction with his father and sisters, isn’t the last?

There are struggles in Happy-Go-Lucky, both personal and societal. The beach house Sedaris and his longtime partner, Hugh, purchase in North Carolina is badly damaged in a hurricane; the pandemic renders Sedaris’s book tour a theater of the absurd; he attempts to come to terms with the reality of watching his sisters grow old. The throughline is a deep commitment to family, who are both his material and his life. Each of Sedaris’s collections grows more poignant as goodbyes shrink his family circle.

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Author David Sedaris
Star Count /5
Format Hard
Page Count 272 pages
Publisher Little, Brown and Company
Publish Date 31-May-2022
ISBN 9780316392457
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Issue July 2022
Category Biographies & Memoirs