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The Middle Place

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  30,339 ratings  ·  3,092 reviews
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Corrigan opens her memoir with these words: "The thing you need to know about me is that I am George Corrigan's daughter, his only daughter."
She continues with an unabashed tribute to the first man in her life.
George Corrigan emerges as an outsized figure of immense good cheer and spirited disposition. A self-assured adman and forme
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published January 8th 2008 by Hachette Books (first published June 25th 2005)
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Teri Sweatman Kelly and her father both go into remission. If you google George Corrigan, All American Lacrosse player from U. of MD, you will see more about George…moreKelly and her father both go into remission. If you google George Corrigan, All American Lacrosse player from U. of MD, you will see more about George. I hate to write too much since it can be spoiler info for some readers(less)
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Average rating 3.87  · 
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 ·  30,339 ratings  ·  3,092 reviews

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Aug 09, 2010 rated it really liked it

So how does this censorship thing work exactly?

Excerpt from The Middle Place [with "f-bomb" censored:]:
Just after reading The Middle Place, I stupidly started reading some of the reviews. I got madder by the minute. Far too many reviewers seemed to miss the fact that Kelly Corrigan, the mother of two young girls, was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer. Instead, they fretted about the f-bombs. In particular, the paragraph (below) by this reviewer caught my imagination:
A few things bothered me.
Jan 07, 2009 rated it liked it
This is the memoir a Piedmont mother of two, learning to navigate life in the middle place - that place where you're trying to learn how to be an independent person/parent of your own, but still find yourself running home to your parents when problems arise. Corrigan has a gregarious larger than life father, who has consistently convinced her that she is the most awe-inspiring wonderful person around. As a result, she seems to believe a little too much that the world revolves around her and that ...more
Kelly Ballard
Mar 25, 2009 rated it it was ok
This book was recommended to me by a clerk in a bookstore. I think it is his go-to suggestion for that thirty-something Mommy he believes is looking for a little more…Unfortunately, although I fit the type - not it.

I liked the first third of the book fine and then her father also got sick – and that is where she lost me. I immediately stopped liking her. Absolutely I had compassion from her desperate place, but I (like her family too) was unbelievably annoyed and frustrated by her behavior.

Mar 23, 2009 rated it it was ok
Just started. I've laughed and cried already and am only a couple of chapters into it. I can't imagine getting cancer, but breast cancer is in my line now that my grandmother is suffering from it.


I just finished, and I'd love to give this book more stars, but I feel it would be overly generous. I really liked Kelly at the beginning of the book, and I really WANTED to like her by the end, but just couldn't relate.

A few things bothered me. I didn't like reading with a pen in my hand to
Katherine Center
Jul 23, 2009 rated it it was amazing
In the home stretch with this book, I felt all tangled-up with this family--in a good way. And the writing is lovely.
Jul 11, 2008 rated it really liked it
I just finished The Middle Place by Kelly Corrigan, and I am aching. Aching at the beauty of it, at her good humor, honesty, and vulnerability, at the awful fates that give a young mother of two stage 3 breast cancer, at the even worse fates that give that young mother's beloved father his own grave cancer diagnosis just months after her own. I ache because the book is really beautiful; it's a book that I wish that I had written- and that ache turns into a shudder because I was living half of th ...more
Oct 09, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone
It made me laugh. It made me cry. It made me remember what going through breast cancer was all about. It's kind of ironic, but we must have been going through breast cancer about the same time during the years of 2004-05. It made me remember how I loved my husband and my girls, my family and my friends for helping me through that difficult time. It made me think of my Dad and how much I love him and appreciate his sense of humor. It made me remember times of growing up and silly things I'd forgo ...more
Feb 14, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
When I had seen the YouTube video with Kelly Corrigan reading about the value of friendship, I was very touched, and I thought that this book would be absolutely fantastic. It wasn't. I did this as a BOCD rather than actually reading the book, and I am sure that had some impact on my review. The reader was too effusive, and hearing someone's dad refer to the daughter as Lovey was disconcerting. All I could think of was Gilligan's Island and Thurston Howell III. If everyone who has cancer gets to ...more
Nov 09, 2007 rated it really liked it
Shelves: memoirs
I am read this book as part of an experiment...the publisher gave out advanced copies to people who were willing to participate in an online book group. The book sounded great so I agreed.

Fantastic book. Beautiful and witty. Corrigan articulated everything I never knew I felt about my parents and being a daughter. Her family is charming and she told just the right details to make me smile.
Jan 24, 2009 rated it it was ok
While this book is'll end up disliking the author. You'll find yourself wanting to jump into the book and give her one of those Scarlett O'Hara slaps. ...more
Feb 06, 2008 rated it it was amazing
The Top Place for Outstanding Memoirs
This memoir is filled with love, humility, honesty, compassion and a great sense of humor. Well-written and highly readable, the structure pulls you from cover to cover so quickly, it's readable in one sitting. My one sitting happened to be on a long plane ride, however, the time I spent getting to know Kelly Corrigan and her father, "Greenie," along with the rest of Kelly's family, made the plane not only bearable, but also enjoyable. She moved me from tears
Mar 24, 2009 rated it it was ok
I think I need a sabaticcal from ordinary joe/joanne memoirs. It all starts out OK, I'm enjoying myself, and then the person just starts to annoy me! As a woman who was diagnosed with breast cancer at a young age myself (41), I realy thought I would relate to her staory, and early on, I did. Her process and recovery would be of interest to me, but not so much the story of her life and her almost squeamishly strong attachment to her father. Sorry, but I'm just not interested in her jobs or how sh ...more
Jan 03, 2009 rated it really liked it
I really related to Kelly on many fronts. I didn't however like her continuous use of the Lord's name in vain NOR the f-bomb. I actually censored my copy of this book to clean it up a bit. Kelly is an amazing author and I really liked the style of how she goes back and forth from the past and present. It's also so current. The story ends just a couple of years ago so when she mentions President Bush or the Brad/Angie/Jen triangle it feels like I'm right there with her. I know what she's talking ...more
Feb 11, 2009 rated it really liked it
I liked this book so much. Definitely a cry-book - be warned - but I think what I got from this the most, beyond all of the cancer stuff, had to do with parenting. In the prologue she writes (about her father) "He defined me first, as parents do. Those early characterizations can become the shimmering self-image we embrace or the limited, stifling perception we rail against for a lifetime. In my case, he sees me as I would like to be seen. In fact, I'm not even sure what's true about me, since I ...more
Nov 27, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: local
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 05, 2014 rated it it was ok
I have struggled with the idea of whether to review this book or not because this book is a memoir about someone's actual life. But I have been mulling this book over for a few weeks since I read it, and frankly, I am mystified as to how it has garnered so many 5 star reviews.

I absolutely loved the first half of the book. I truly did. It was a real, moving, lovely tribute to her dad, known as "Greenie". The anecdotes about him and her early growing up years were so funny. Her description of her
Mary Karlee
Apr 30, 2011 rated it did not like it
I really enjoyed this book for the first few chapters. I liked the author's voice and writing style, and I loved the stories about her dad. Partly because "Greenie" is just a great character and partly because his daughter's love and admiration for her dad shine through so brightly in her narratives. However, I did not finish this book. I was listening to it on CD and I was done with hearing the f-word. (I think I was about 1/6th through and I'd heard it at least 5 times.) Secondly, her philosop ...more
Oct 01, 2012 rated it liked it
This book didn't grab me. It seemed to be all over the place. Constantly jumping around. It wasn't just about her and her cancer or her and her father's cancer. She told lots of childhood stories that didn't seem to have any bearing. And the language was harsh. Which is kind of funny because I just recently readThe Pursuit of Happyness and it was loaded with bad language, but for some reason it fit there. In this book it just didn't work for me. It was angry language.

I tried to like Kelly, but a
Allison Pickett
May 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
My second book by Kelly Corrigan and I have the biggest crush. Her honesty takes my breath (because, I can't EVEN imagine speaking so candidly about anything ever). Kelly writes about her family, her childhood, her cancer, her children and it is 100 percent interesting and charming even though I wouldn't know her if I saw her on the street. I will certainly read all her books and any she writes in the future. ...more
Apr 03, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I gave this a shot, a random book that sounded promising, about a woman dealing with her own cancer and her father’s. The narrator is a woman that is a bit self-centered, a party girl. I found her situation to be relatable, but her personality just didn’t grow on me. Her descriptions of her father were the most interesting parts of the book. He comes across as a character. Another reviewer mentioned that they saw no growth in the narrator. I saw that too, and I think that is what led me to a not ...more
Tiffany Hough
Apr 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
Lovely and hopeful. Made me cry and miss my grandpa, who was as larger-than-life and buoyant as the author’s own beloved dad.
May 16, 2020 rated it really liked it
Hilarious and poignant. Loved it!
Mary Blye Kramer
Jan 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
What a great book. What a fabulous writer. The story of cancer - she and her dad had it at the same time. Obviously the author survives. I had to google to see about her dad halfway through the book because I absolutely fell in love with him. My dad was always happy, also, so very content and positive. Readers will relate to this book in one way or another.
Jul 24, 2009 rated it it was amazing
The Middle Place is a book that will resonate with countless women in their 30s, women trying to figure out how to stand on their own two feet when it’s so comfortable to (still!) be coddled by doting parents. The book’s jacket description states this, but makes it sound like a reasonable and sympathetic dilemma. Reading the book myself, I got a more negative spin on this quandary.

I absolutely loved this book for its honesty. Kelly does not paint herself as a heroine who reaches through difficul
Feb 27, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: women, mothers, daughters
Recommended to Leeann by: Laura Waldoch

This is an amazing book.

The author has a voice that makes you feel like you are a best friend or confidante from the first page. Many times as I was reading this book, I would be nodding my head or trying to swallow past the lump in my throat.

This is the kind of book you will find yourself reading in the carpool line and as you are browning the meat, because you simply cannot put it down.

Upon completion, I felt happy, weepy and slightly bereft, much like the way you feel as you say goodbye to
Mar 06, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I thought this book was so well written. It read it in about 3 days, but I guess I didn't fall in love with it because 1)I've never had cancer and honestly can't relate, and 2)I do not have a good relationship with my father. These two points were so central to the story and I loved how she told it, but even though my own father has had cancer twice (much like the author's father) I couldn't relate to the crazy love that she has for him. Memoirs are so personal, for the reader as much as the aut ...more
Feb 24, 2009 rated it liked it
There are some aspects of this memoir that give it the potential for making it more morose than it is, and enough "real life" challenges that are serious to keep it from being a light airy read. The writer's natural style manages to keep it real, like something your next door neighbor would tell you about her life. It was a likeable read. ...more
Feb 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
A story about that middle place of being someone’s child, but having children of your own.The book goes on to chronicle her battle with cancer at the same time her father is diagnosed with bladder cancer but is interspersed with stories from the past about her childhood, meeting her husband and the birth of her daughters.
Jan 05, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
Wow, did I ever love this. Kelly Corrigan writes in my most favorite of ways, and I couldn't put it down. It was sad, but not, and happy, but realistic—all at the same time. I'll be thinking about it for a long time. ...more
Jan 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
I loved this book. It was so engaging. I put off reading it for a long time, even though I love memoirs. I didn't think I wanted to read a book about "cancer". This book is so much more. The family relationships were relatable. I can't wait to read more books by Kelly Corrigan. ...more
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just as important as their physical health Neuro3x 1 5 Oct 16, 2014 02:21AM  

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Kelly Corrigan is a New York Times bestselling author whose writing has appeared in O Magazine, Glamour and Good Housekeeping. Her newspaper columns for the Bay Area News Group cover everyday matters from the power of an unequivocal apology to the contagious nature of weight gain, extramarital affairs and going green." ...more

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