“A loving testament to the work and reward of the best friendships, the kind where your arms can’t distinguish burden from embrace.” — People
New York Times Bestselling author Ann Patchett’s first work of nonfiction chronicling her decades-long friendship with the critically acclaimed and recently deceased author, Lucy Grealy.
Ann Patchett and the late Lucy Grealy met in college in 1981, and, after enrolling in the Iowa Writer’s Workshop, began a friendship that would be as defining to both of their lives as their work. In Gealy’s critically acclaimed and hugely successful memoir, Autobiography of a Face, she wrote about losing part of her jaw to childhood cancer, years of chemotherapy and radiation, and endless reconstructive surgeries. In Truth & Beauty, the story isn’t Lucy’s life or Ann’s life, but the parts of their lives they shared together. This is a portrait of unwavering commitment that spans twenty years, from the long cold winters of the Midwest, to surgical wards, to book parties in New York. Through love, fame, drugs, and despair, this is what it means to be part of two lives that are intertwined…and what happens when one is left behind.
This is a tender, brutal book about loving the person we cannot save. It is about loyalty and being uplifted by the sheer effervescence of someone who knew how to live life to the fullest.