JULY 2016

BETTYVILLE: A MEMOIR – GEORGE HODGMAN

George Hodgman-BETTYVILLE-Two Roads BooksThe New York Times word-of-mouth bestseller.

A witty, tender memoir of a son’s journey home to care for his irascible mother-a tale of secrets, silences, and enduring love.

‘A REMARKABLE, LAUGH-OUT-LOUD BOOK’

New York Times

‘WITHOUT A DOUBT MY FAVOURITE BOOK OF THE YEAR. WISE, WITTY, AND HEARTBREAKING’

Nathan Lane,Wall Street Journal

‘A HUMOROUS, BITTERSWEET ACCOUNT OF HODGMAN’S CARING FOR HIS AGEING, IRASCIBLE MOTHER’

Vanity Fair

‘YOU WON’T FINISH THIS TALE DRY-EYED’

People

A Paramount TV series with Shirley McLaine and Matthew Broderick is currently in development. 

 

 

A witty, tender memoir of a son’s journey home to care for his irascible mother-a tale of secrets, silences, and enduring love.
When George Hodgman leaves Manhattan for his hometown of Paris, Missouri, he finds himself-an unlikely caretaker and near-lethal cook-in a head-on collision with his aging mother, Betty, a woman of wit and will. Will George lure her into assisted living? When hell freezes over. He can’t bring himself to force her from the home both treasure-the place where his father’s voice lingers, the scene of shared jokes, skirmishes, and, behind the dusty antiques, a rarely acknowledged conflict: Betty, who speaks her mind but cannot quite reveal her heart, has never really accepted the fact that her son is gay.

As these two unforgettable characters try to bring their different worlds together, Hodgman reveals the challenges of Betty’s life and his own struggle for self-respect, moving readers from their small town-crumbling but still colorful-to the star-studded corridors of Vanity Fair. Evocative of The End of Your Life Book Club and The Tender Bar, Hodgman’s New York Times bestselling debut is both an indelible portrait of a family and an exquisitely told tale of a prodigal son’s return.

‘A remarkable, laugh-out-loud book . . . Rarely has the subject of elder care produced such droll human comedy, or a heroine quite on the mettlesome order of Betty Baker Hodgman. For as much as the book works on several levels (as a meditation on belonging, as a story of growing up gay and the psychic cost of silence, as metaphor for recovery), it is the strong-willed Betty who shines through’ New York Times

‘A lovely memoir . . .You won’t finish this tale dry-eyed’ People, Book of the Week

‘A gorgeously constructed memoir . . . Hodgman creates an unforgettable portrait of his mother, Betty-a strong-willed nonagenarian struggling against the slow-motion breakdown of her mind and body. He evokes her with wit and tenderness’ New York Times Book Review

‘Without a doubt my favorite book of the year. Wise, witty, and heartbreaking . . . a surprisingly profound and hilarious look at aging, mothers and sons, fathers and sons, growing up gay and small-town life in America’ Nathan Lane, “Who Read What: Books of the Year 2015,” Wall Street Journal

‘A humorous, bittersweet account of Hodgman’s caring for his aging, irascible mother’ Vanity Fair

‘Hodgman has written what will be seen, even years from now, as the quintessential book on taking care. . . . His desire to empathize, his focus on goodness, his search for hope allow him to find the beauty in the hour of now’ Chicago Tribune

‘An intimate, heartfelt portrait of a mother and son, each at the crossroads of life . . . Hodgman’s sharp wit carries the book ever forward’ Minneapolis Star-Tribune

‘An exquisitely written memoir about the complicated but deeply genuine love a son feels for his courageous, headstrong, vulnerable mother in the twilight of her life. George Hodgman is stunningly clear-eyed and yet so darned big-hearted. Bettyville is just wonderful’ Jeannette Walls, author of The Glass Castle

‘The idea of a cultured gay man leaving New York City to care for his aging mother in Paris, Missouri, is already funny, and George Hodgman reaps that humor with great charm. But then he plunges deep, examining the warm yet fraught relationship between mother and son with profound insight and understanding. This book looks outside, too, offering a moving lament for small-town America. Hodgman tenderly evokes the time before family farms and small businesses were replaced by meth labs and Walmarts. Yet he’s not sentimental about that lost world-he knew its cruelties firsthand. As George and his mother come to terms with one another at the end of her days, the book begins to shimmer with something much more rare than love: a boundless, transcendent, and simple kindness. Bettyville is a beautiful book about the strange plenitude that comes from finally letting go of everything’ Alison Bechdel, author of Fun Home

‘Bettyville is a beautifully crafted memoir, rich with humor and wisdom. George Hodgman has created an unforgettable book about mothers and sons, and about the challenges that come with growing older and growing up’ Will Schwalbe, author of The End of Your Life Book Club


George-Hodgman-author-photo-credit-Sigrid-Estrada-copyGeorge Hodgman
is a veteran magazine and book editor who has worked at Simon & Schuster, Vanity Fair, andTalk magazine.
His writing has appeared in Entertainment Weekly, Interview, W, and Harper’s Bazaar, among other publications.
He lives in New York City and Paris, Missouri.

georgehodgman.com
facebook.com/GeorgeHodgmanAuthor

 

 

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