Will Byrnes's Reviews > Making Toast

Making Toast by Roger Rosenblatt
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Jan 29, 2010

really liked it
bookshelves: biography-autobiography-memoir

Roger Rosenblatt’s daughter Amy was 38, a doctor, a wife and a mother of three small children when she died. Making Toast is Rosenblatt’s memoir of how he, his wife, Ginny, and the people Amy left behind coped with their loss. Roger and Ginny moved in with their son-in-law, Harris, and helped raise their grandkids. He writes of the day to day activities of parenting anew, of the questions the children ask, the decisions and steps required to continue living. It is a quiet book. I almost felt as if there was a hush in the room as I read it. The story is, of course, very sad, and I went through more than a few tissues over the course of this short book. But love, caring and understanding offer structures around which one can reconstruct. Rosenblatt’s is a simple story, beautifully written, engaging and very, very human.

P 32
When I first saw Amy, curled up in the little white hospital blanket, I remembered what John Kelleher, a professor or Irish Studies at Harvard, and the father of four girls, had told me about fathers and daughters: “Every girl child peers up from her crib, sees her old man, and thinks, ‘Sucker.’”

[As the father of two girls, I felt compelled to include the above quote. It is so true.]

BTW, Rosenblatt's Thomas Murphy was my favorite novel of 2016. There is a significant stream in it regarding a grandfather and grandson.
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
December 1, 2009 – Finished Reading
January 29, 2010 – Shelved
January 29, 2010 – Shelved as: biography-autobiography-memoir

Comments (showing 1-14 of 14) (14 new)

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message 1: by Sue (new) - added it

Sue I'm surprised that this is not on my list already as I recognized the description of the book immediately. After reading your review, I'm adding it. As always, now to get to it.


Will Byrnes He has another coming out this year, I believe. If so, I will do a fuller review of it than I did on this one back on '09.


message 3: by Renita (new)

Renita D'Silva Want to read this now, after reading this wonderful review. Love the quote from Pg 32 :-)


message 4: by Linda (new) - added it

Linda Great review. It’s a special today. Your review helped me decide to read it.


Will Byrnes Thanks, Linda. Rosenblatt is a wonderful writer. He also writes about grandparenting, but in a very different way in, Thomas Murphy, my favorite novel of 2016.


message 6: by Linda (new) - added it

Linda Will wrote: "Thanks, Linda. Rosenblatt is a wonderful writer. He also writes about grandparenting, but in a very different way in, Thomas Murphy, my favorite novel of 2016."
I’m adding Thomas Murphy to my TBR list. He’s a new author for me. Love your reviews!


message 7: by Linda (new) - added it

Linda Got them both! Merry Christmas to me!


message 8: by Will (last edited Dec 22, 2017 09:10PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Will Byrnes Thanks, Linda. Merry Christmas indeed.


message 9: by Reya Parish (new)

Reya Parish can anyone friend me? I have no life -_- '-' =) =p >_< T-T ¬_¬


message 10: by Beverly (new)

Beverly This sounds very sweet. I get so tired of hearing the negative aspects of poor, put-upon men trapped with marriage and children in our society. Comedies, so-called, on television are full of this, see any Kevin James show. I don't think we can hear too much about fathers who love their wives and children. In the 1800s and early 1900s men sought marriage and family as the highest aspiration of their lives. Now, there is a decided turn against this and young single men are encouraged to avoid the "trap".


message 11: by Will (new) - rated it 4 stars

Will Byrnes This Trapped thing is not exactly new. It was common practice back in the days of my youth for the groom to write HELP in white on the bottom of his shoes, visible when he was kneeling at the altar, for the wedding ceremony. Also, these days, I believe there are more women than ever before who consider marriage as much a trap as many men do, and are happier to remain single, without the social reprobation that might once have held. the divorce rate suggests that ever-after marriage is a coin-toss in any case.


message 12: by Beverly (new)

Beverly True, so true, about the women, but it has never been such a social stigma for women to be married or want to be married as it is for men. Also, the love of children is seen as an innate, natural thing for women, but men are not seen as nurturers which could not be further from the truth. Children, especially, little boys are conditioned not to be seen this way. I hope it is changing.


message 13: by Will (last edited Dec 24, 2017 10:10PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Will Byrnes Tougher in the USA than in other so-called advanced economies, because of government and corporate hostility to family friendly policies. I expect this is not so pronounced in the more enlightened European nations.


message 14: by Beverly (new)

Beverly You are right, the US continues to be a more conservative, corporate-based society than most European countries.


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