It's more tempting than ever to want to build a bomb shelter and retreat from the upheavals of life. But with this memoir, Mary Laura Philpott convinces us that, like Frank the turtle, we have to poke our heads out from time to time, confront the challenges, and keep going. Thank you, MLP, for making all of us worriers feel seen, and for helping us put into words the emotions (so very many emotions) that go along with being not just a parent but a person.
— Lady Smith, Snail owner
April 2022 Indie Next List
“I have so much love for Bomb Shelter, as a mom, a woman, an animal lover, and simply as a fellow human. I love Mary Laura’s humor and her compassionate and certain voice. I can’t wait to share this book with EVERYONE!”
— Sue Kowalski, The Bookstore of Glen Ellyn, Glen Ellyn, IL
From the bestselling author of I Miss You When I Blink comes “her new masterwork” (The New York Times), an unforgettable memoir that is “a beautifully wrought ode to life” (The Washington Post).
A lifelong worrier, Mary Laura Philpott always kept an eye out for danger, a habit that only intensified when she became a parent. But she looked on the bright side, too, believing that if she cared enough, she could keep her loved ones safe.
Then, in the dark of one quiet morning, she woke abruptly to a terrible sound—and found her teenage son unconscious on the floor. In the aftermath of a crisis that darkened her sunny spirit, she wondered: If this happened, what else could happen? And how do any of us keep going when we can’t know for sure what’s coming next?
Leave it to the writer who “puts words to the human condition in a life-affirming, joyful, and surprisingly funny way” (Lori Gottlieb, New York Times bestselling author) to illuminate what it means to move through life with a soul made of equal parts anxiety and optimism (and while she’s at it, to ponder the mysteries of backyard turtles and the challenges of spatchcocking a turkey).
Hailed as a modern classic that “deserves pride of place alongside Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird, Joan Didion’s The White Album, and Nora Ephron’s Crazy Salad” (Garrett M. Graff, New York Times bestselling author), Bomb Shelter “reveals, page after page, that the love that makes us vulnerable is the same force that makes us powerful” (Maggie Smith, bestselling author of Goldenrod).
About the Author
Mary Laura Philpott, nationally bestselling author of I Miss You When I Blink and Bomb Shelter, writes essays and memoirs that examine the overlap of the absurd and the profound in everyday life. Her writing has been featured by The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Atlantic, among many other publications. A former bookseller, she also hosted an interview program on Nashville Public Television for several years. Mary Laura lives in Nashville, Tennessee, with her family.