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Joy Enough: A Memoir
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Joy Enough: A Memoir

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  116 ratings  ·  26 reviews
Sifting gingerly through memories of her late mother, brilliant newcomer Sarah McColl has penned an indelible tribute to the joy and pain of loving well. Even as her own marriage splinters, McColl drops everything when her mother is diagnosed with cancer, returning to the family farmhouse and laboring over elaborate meals in the hopes of nourishing her back to health. In a ...more
Hardcover, 176 pages
Published January 15th 2019 by Liveright
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3.95  · 
Rating details
 ·  116 ratings  ·  26 reviews

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Jenny (Reading Envy)
I'm all in for grief memoirs, still, and Joy Enough by Sarah McColl is an honest capture of layered grief - loss of marriage, loss of mother. It's not only bad parts and her past is largely positive, so it isn't all sad, very true to reality.

I would give this to a friend struggling with a parent's illness or terminal diagnosis. It's hopeful in its straightforward look at everyday death (that never feels "normal" when you go through it.)
Dec 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I almost gave up on this book , but so glad I didn't. Very touching, and it just spoke to me. Lovely. So worth it.

Thanks you Goodreads for letting me win this book. While I got the book for free,it had no bearing on the rating I gave it.
Jan 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Like a cool washcloth on a hot forehead. This was the perfect balm for my own grieving soul.
Jaclyn Hillis
Jun 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Joy Enough is a beautifully written memoir about love, and the life and loss of her mother.

I received an advanced copy from NY BookCon.
Kris B
Jan 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
“I loved my mother and she died. Is that a story?”

This book caught me off guard and pulled me in with that first line.
What follows is the story of a mother’s impact on her family, and especially on her daughter, Sarah.
The language is rife with beautiful metaphors, and the structure is delicately woven around memories of her mother.

This is a tender artful expression of pain and longing, beautifully written.

Finishing it, I’m reminded of the great value of memories, and the stories they carry.
Claire Fuller
Sarah McColl's mother dies, she loved her, she wonders if it is a strong enough story. It certainly is. McColl writes beautifully of love and death in snippets of memory, interspersed with the story of her own failing marriage (I didn't find these elements as strong as those about her relationship with her mother).
I'll definitely be looking out for what McColl writes next.
Feb 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: memoir, grief
This was a story that mirrored both my grief for my mother and my grief for my marriage more than anything I’ve read. What a poetic, lyrical and luscious book. And the experience of recognizing myself and reading my previously unarticulated thoughts and feelings- true gifts. ❤🙏🏼 ...more
Martha Toll
Here is my review of this book on NPR.
Lisa Cobb Sabatini
Dec 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I won an Advance Reading Copy of Joy Enough: A Memoir by Sarah McColl from Goodreads.

I'm reading Joy Enough: A Memoir by Sarah McColl, readers experience defining moments in the author's life that are at once unique to the writer and familiar to the reader. Recognizing the growing pains endured by the author and sharing the emotions, readers can't help but to empathize with McColl and to revisit the precious, life changing, identity forming moments of their own lives.
Sweet and sad, insightful an
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Hazelj jones
Jan 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book !
Sarah McColl writes with such honest feelings of the journey of her mother's passing and the layers of feelings one has when they know someone they love will soon be gone .A long goodby! A excellent writing and sharing as the daughter goes through the process .I could only admire the author for writing this great book and walking through the day to day activities and coming to understand what a wonderful lady the mother was .
Writing down such day to day feelings and
E Emens
Jan 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This memoir is exquisite. Familiar, precise, and painful; gorgeous, luxurious, and, in rare and surprising moments, laugh-out-loud funny. Anyone who has loved, and then stopped, can relate. Anyone who has loved someone that much, and walked through their dying, can relate. As can anyone who has been a daughter who loved her mother. Or who has been accused of making too much meaning out of small matters. McColl makes words do unusual things yet aims always to communicate more than to dazzle. Quit ...more
Kim Bakos
Jan 24, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: giveaways
This book was a sweet remembrance of the author's mother. I liked her writing style, but found the shifts in time to be a little hard to follow. I found the falling apart of her marriage to be sad since it seems that in some ways they were still in love. Marriage is something to fight for, not to be discarded once you are "over it". I read the book in one day, so I enjoyed it, but won't say it is a "must read" for me.
Jennifer Romolini
Dec 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Sarah McColl is a gorgeous, generous writer; with the kind of gentleness, warmth, and depth of skill that makes even the most crushingly sad moments in her work feel hopeful and alive. This book is about grief — but also about love and truth and understanding and discovering who we are. I finished "Joy Enough" last month and have not stopped thinking about it since. I honestly don't know if I ever will.
Jan 31, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: artsy-fartsy, memoir
It was okay, although the bouncing around between past and present was a bit confusing. Some of the writing was overly purple prose, while other parts were beautifully done. But it was still a heartbreaking read as McColl not only tried to deal with her mother's death, but also the disinegration of her marriage.
Anne E
Jan 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I loved this memoir. Sarah speaks of the big things we all experience love and loss with a feminine and poetic voice. This is a book that lingers with you after you are done. I highly recommend reading it. It will make you cry at the fragility of love and at the same time deeply understand the value of it.
Jackie Bergeron
Feb 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Loved the exploration of what it means when someone says you are just like your mother - something I feel I haven’t read before in a grief novel. Brilliant tone as well (I was expecting this to be morbidly sad.) While I didn’t love the aspect of the story about her ex husband, I do really love the way she tied these two pivotal experiences together to tell the story.
J. Huber
Feb 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
One of the most beautiful books I've ever read. I lost myself in it and emerged both wowed and haunted. It's relatively short but substantive and would make, imho, a great book for a reading group.
Feb 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I cannot tell you how much I enjoyed this book.
Dec 29, 2018 rated it it was ok
I couldn't really follow along with this one. I felt like it was too broken up and hard to follow.
Dec 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
"Joy Enough" by Sarah McColl, is a beautifully written, courageously candid memoir about the loss of her mother. I won an ARC from Goodreads giveaways.

Katie Melone
Jan 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This memoir is gorgeous. Full stop. Read it now.
Susie | Novel Visits
Jan 10, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: memoir
My Thoughts: This slim little memoir tried to pack a lot into a very small space and suffered for it. McColl seemed to have had much she wanted to share about her young life: the life and death of her mother, her own failing marriage, her journey toward graduate school, a new, better relationship. Any of these might have been a subject for a memoir, but in Joy Enough they ALL were. By far, the strongest of her”vignettes” were those of her mother. I only wish McColl had made that her entire book. ...more
Dec 03, 2018 rated it did not like it
A super-short memoir: my favorite! And yet, I couldn't do it. Uber artsy-fartsy flowery language right from the start... which made it so difficult to understand and follow the plot. I was reading the "Advance Reading Copy"... I just hope she throws this nonsense in the garbage and starts over with something better before it's published.
rated it really liked it
Jan 10, 2019
rated it it was ok
Jan 25, 2019
Amelia Beckerman
rated it it was amazing
Jun 12, 2018
rated it really liked it
Sep 25, 2018
rated it really liked it
Jan 03, 2019
Mary Immediato
rated it it was ok
Jan 17, 2019
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