A Memoir of Translation and Discovery
by Linda Murphy Marshall
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Pub Date 12 Jul 2022 | Archive Date 3 Jul 2022
By the time Murphy Marshall is done with Ivy Lodge, she has not only made new discoveries about her past, she has also come to a new understanding of who she is and how she fits into her world.
"Translation, at its essence, is the rendering of one into another. That is the guiding force behind Ivy Lodge, one woman's return to a childhood home and the secrets within. Triggered by the deaths of elderly parents who hoarded artifacts from a lifetime of collecting, Murphy Marshall journeys deep into the labyrinth of memory, perception, and the shapeshifting forces of identity. Room by room, object by object, she examines the detritus of a troubled family past to excavate the meaning of home and restore the narrative of a self she thought she had lost. A beautiful debut."
--Harrison Candelaria Fletcher, author of Presentimiento: A Life in Dreams
"Ivy Lodge pulses with the elemental dynamic of family dysfunction and interpersonal isolation. Linda Murphy Marshall's exploration of the ostentatious house in which she grew up peels back the psychic, cultural, and spiritual layers of one family's particular, and divided, residence upon this earth. Our tribal blood both binds us and pits us against each other. Ivy Lodge brings that emotional paradox into a brilliantly sharp focus."
--Sue William Silverman, author of How to Survive Death and Other Inconveniences
"Using translation of languages as a metaphor to search for the meaning of family relationships, Linda Murphy Marshall takes the readers on a journey of recollection and compassion to understand her parents. Ultimately, Ivy Lodge is a story of self-discovery through the language of love, written in elegant prose. It is an extraordinary book."
--Allison Hong Merrill, author of Ninety-Nine Fire Hoops: A Memoir
"With carefully crafted narrative, Linda Murphy-Marshall has written the next great memoir about her painful and still-mysterious childhood. After both parents' deaths, she returns to the family home, Ivy Lodge--a grand façade that shrouds the emptiness inside. She moves from room to room, examining distressing memories that stem from her emotionally detached parents. A multi-linguist, Murphy-Marshall applies her considerable language skills to translate the dialogue that still echoes, ultimately accepting that some languages may be too intricate to understand. I highly recommend this first-time author and look forward to her next release!"
--Donna Koros Stramella, author of Coffee Killed My Mother
"A comfortably white middle-class American family living in the Midwest: what could go wrong? No poverty or alcoholism, no racial discrimination or physical abuse: how could someone raised in such favorable circumstances emerge so wounded? Linda Marshall's memoir takes us deep into the dysfunction of one such family. In intriguing detail, she examines how seemingly ideal conditions can result in a lifelong attempt to 'translate' parents' actions into meaning. Many will relate to the lives it describes, prevalent and arguably influential in shaping our country's social fabric as they are."
--Chivvis Moore, Author of First Tie Your Camel, Then Trust in God: An American Feminist in the Arab World
"Ivy Lodge is a brave, beautiful book about the unspoken language of family. Linda Murphy Marshall is unafraid of looking in the dark corners of her childhood home in order to find meaning, peace, and ultimately, light."
--Dawn Raffel, author of The Secret Life of Objects
Available on NetGalley
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