Please take a moment to review Hachette Book Group's updated Privacy Policy: read the updated policy here.

Love Like Salt

Love Like Salt

CHOSEN BY MAGGIE O’FARRELL IN THE GUARDIAN AS ONE OF HER BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR


‘It’s a slice of a life . . . a complex, intelligent, beautiful, thoughtful, rather lyrical book’ -Cathy Rentzenbrink, author of The Last Act of Love

‘A moving treatise on inheritance, not just of a disease like cystic fibrosis, but of our attitudes to living and loving, our sense of cultural and familial landscape, and how these intangibles pass down through generations. Stevenson picks apart her life like a strand of DNA to uncover just how we become the sum of our parts’ Daily Telegraph

‘A beautiful memoir . . . [Stevenson] is a novelist and a translator and her memoir is about translation in the larger sense. Translating the world is what we all do but she reminds us that one can hope – with a mind as intricately well read and original as hers – to translate misfortune; to absorb and see beyond it . . . Stevenson makes of poetry, fiction and philosophy a protective shawl for her story . . . Although intense she has a carefree wit’ Kate Kellaway, Observer

‘Love Like Salt is a human triumph … Ultimately, Love Like Salt follows in the hallowed footsteps of Helen MacDonald’s brilliant H is for Hawk or Cathy Rentzenbrink’s The Last Act of Love. These are not misery memoirs but reminders that life comes in all shades – that in the darkest moments, beauty and humour can be found’ Francesca Brown, Stylist

‘Did Clara taste salty when I kissed her? She did. She tasted of mermaids, of the sea.’

Love Like Salt is a deeply affecting memoir, beautifully and intelligently written. It is about mothers and daughters, music and illness, genes and inheritance, writing and story-telling. It is about creating joy from the hand you’ve been dealt and following its lead – in this case to rural France, where the author and her family lived for seven years. And back again.

‘I had always written, and until the birth of Clara I wrote for a living. Once I knew the Cystic Fibrosis gene had unfolded itself in our daughter’s body, like a paper flower meeting water, I felt that to write, even if I had had time, or been able, would have been to squander a kind of power which was needed for tending and nurturing. Every moment became a moment in which I protected my baby. Some of it I did in secret, like a madwoman muttering spells. I thought of her as a candle, cupping my hand around her.

A beautifully written memoir, in the vein of H is for Hawk and The Last Act of Love, about motherhood, music and living the best life you can, even in the shadow of illness.
Read More

Genre: Biography & True Stories / Biography: General / Autobiography: General

On Sale: 3rd March 2016

Price: £8.99

ISBN-13: 9780349007809

Reviews

Love Like Salt is a human triumph ... it's all told in the most mesmerising of words, no adjective is extraneous and Love Like Salt flows with poetic precision ... Ultimately, Love Like Salt follows in the hallowed footsteps of Helen MacDonald's brilliant H is for Hawk or Cathy Rentzenbrink's The Last Act of Love. These are not misery memoirs but reminders that life comes in all shades - that in the darkest moments, beauty and humour can be found
Francesca Brown, Stylist
Love Like Salt is a portrait of mothers and children, of a daughter's illness and how it rearranges relationships in unexpected ways. The author weaves in reflections on music and mortality, France and England, religion and secularism, and on the protective love that a mother feels for a sick child . . . Stevenson has written an honest, poetic, affecting book that will speak to any reader
Jenny McCartney, Mail on Sunday
A moving treatise on inheritance, not just of a disease like cf, but of our attitudes to living and loving, our sense of cultural and familial landscape, and how these intangibles pass down through generations. Stevenson picks apart her life like a strand of DNA to uncover just how we become the sum of our parts'
Daily Telegraph
A touching memoir about motherhood and illness that teaches powerful lessons about resilience and finding joy where you can
Good Housekeeping
Affecting and beautifully written maternal memoir which muses on music and illness, genes and inheritance, writing and storytelling . . . an ultimately uplifting book about resilience and living the best life you can, even in the shadow of illness; and creating joy from the hand you've been dealt
Bookseller, 'editor's choice'
An extraordinarily beautiful and mysterious book about parenthood and the random blows that life deals us, as well as the quest to belong, the life of the mind and, ultimately, love. And what glorious prose: Helen Stevenson has a conjuror's knack of seeming to throw everything in, and creating not a jumble, but something that makes absolute, awe-inspiring sense
Julie Myerson
In Love Like Salt, motherhood, medicine and music are explored with a spellbinding intensity. It is a beautifully written and entirely honest memoir...There is a lovely lean towards magical thinking in the form of boundless hope, the healing hands of a friend, the wish for a miracle ... Stevenson acknowledges the pain and overwhelming melancholy of being the mother of a sick child but she also manages to wholeheartedly celebrate the life of her family, who are still determined to live as luminous a life as possible, to make a kind of poetry out of the everyday.
Eithne Farry, Sunday Express
Motherhood, medicine and music are explored with a spellbinding intensity. This memoir is beautifully written and entirely emotionally honest . . . a celebration of a family who are determined to live as luminous a life as possible, to make a kind of poetry out of the everyday
Psychologies, 'Book of the Month'
This is a beautiful love letter to her family from an intelligent woman who has had to dig deep just to survive
Irish Examiner/ Scottish Herald
This is a beautiful memoir . . . [Stevenson] is a novelist and a translator and her memoir is about translation in the larger sense. Translating the world is what we all do but she reminds us that one can hope - with a mind as intricately well read and original as hers - to translate misfortune; to absorb and see beyond it . . . Stevenson makes of poetry, fiction and philosophy a protective shawl for her story . . . Although intense she has a carefree wit
Kate Kellaway, Observer
This memoir is a richly intelligent journey though motherhood, music and art that explores how to live well when life deals out cards you don't want
Stylist
This memoir is full of seeming tricks from fairy stories that turn out to have the weight of science behind them
Daily Telegraph
It's a slice of a life . . . a complex, intelligent, beautiful, thoughtful, rather lyrical book
Cathy Rentzenbrink, author of The Last Act of Love
A touching memoir about motherhood and illness
Sam Baker, The Pool