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Veronica's Grave : A Daughter's Memoir
When young Barbara Bracht’s mother disappears from her life—no one tells her that her mother has died—she leaves in her wake a confused child whose blue-collar father is intent upon erasing any memory of her mother. Forced to keep the secret of her mother’s existence from her younger brother, Barbara struggles to keep from being crushed under the weight of family secrets as she comes of age and strives to educate herself, despite her father’s stance against women’s education. Told with true literary sensibility, this compelling memoir addresses the psychological cost of families who keep secrets, as well as the importance of education and of pursuing one’s dreams and passions. Veronica’s Grave—a daughter’s quest to give her mother back her name— asks us to consider what it is that parents owe their children, and how far a child need go to make things right for her family.
Reviews
Annette Libeskind Berkovits, author of In the Unlikeliest of Places

Readers will be charmed by the protagonist, a girl named after Saint Barbara who can’t shed her father’s insistence on calling her Bob. From the time we meet characters named Betty, Dot and Agnes, we know we have traveled to the fifties and sixties.

The Bronx streets of her working class family remain beloved by Barbara even after she manages the extraordinary feat of escaping a mundane existence and belatedly discovering the death of her young mother, while dealing with a father who coerces her into keeping a family secret.

Barbara’s intelligence and persistence will take her on a journey far from these humble origins. You will find yourself cheering for her as she strolls the Champs-Élysées in her jade green TWA uniform and dines with a French beau at the romantic Le Coupe Choux.

-- Annette Libeskind Berkovits, author of: In the Unlikeliest of Places

Peter H. Kudler, M.D, Department of Psychiatry, NYU Langone Medical Center

“A compelling account of how a young woman, confronted with the unexplained loss of her mother, relies on her own inner resources and determination to not only discover the family secret of who her mother was but, in the process, discovers her own self and her own unacknowledged potential.”—Peter H. Kudler, M.D, Department of Psychiatry, NYU Langone Medical Center   

Rita M Gardner, award winning author of Coconut Latitudes

Donsky’s coming-of-age memoir is a vivid portrait of a remarkable life. It is a deft rendering that begins by inhabiting the shadows of a childhood lost, later illustrating a person becoming slowly visible to herself. The images and sounds of her New York neighborhoods—as well as the perfume-scented rues in the Paris she discovers as a young woman—are defining brushstrokes to complement and frame this remarkable story.

--Rita M Gardner, award-winning author of Coconut Latitudes

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