Elsewhere is a memoir by Richard Russo. In his youth, Richard and his mother lived in the second story of a two-flat owned and occupied by his maternal grandparents on the first floor. He had a happy childhood surrounded by aunts, uncles, and cousins who lived nearby. His mother was a fiercely independent woman who paid her own way and that of her son. It was her influence which led her son out of the declining town in which he was born. The only thing was, much like Charles Lindbergh’s mother, Russo’s followed him wherever the path of his life led.
Many times, his mother was a difficult burden due to her inexplicable behavior, but Russo never abandoned her. I admire him for it.
This is a beautiful memoir told with honesty and love. As a single parent myself, it touched my heart. I’m of the age now when I am learning to let go of my grown children in order that they might live their own lives separate of mine. Like any other parent, it is difficult at times. Perhaps even more so because I am a single parent. This book reinforced my determination to do my best to forge a new path of my own with the belief that it is best all the way around.
There are many truths in this book which struck a deep chord within me. I am grateful to have read this memoir.