Crossing the River: Seven Stories That Saved My Life, A Memoir (Hardcover)

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About the Author

Carol Smith is an award-winning journalist and editor for NPR affiliate KUOW in Seattle. Previously she worked for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer and the Los Angeles Times. Her newspaper work has won dozens of national and regional awards and has been nominated for the Pulitzer Prize a remarkable seven times, and her writing has appeared in more than a dozen literary journals. Smith was recently named Editor of the Year by Public Media Journalists Association. One of Carol’s great passions is working with KUOW’s youth radio group, Radioactive, which teaches high school students from diverse backgrounds to tell their personal stories for radio in their own voices.

Praise For…

“...the stories she collected from that time inform this intimate and humane narrative that should offer solace for readers who have experienced similar circumstances...An uplifting group of moving stories.”
— Kirkus

“a powerful, unforgettable memoir...told so compellingly that 15 pages in, no possibility of putting it down existed... Her writing never got in the way of a narrative but rather brought out its fullness... This book represents her triumph.... It’s magnificent.”
— The Montana Standard

“This difficult yet hopeful reading journey will appeal to memoir fans and those interested in medical nonfiction.”
— Booklist

“There is no rule book for how to grieve, so we are left to navigate our own way through it, hopeful that there are compasses in the world to point us in the right direction. Crossing the River is one such compass. An unflinching look at Carol Smith’s grief after the loss of her young son, it illuminates how sometimes going to the very places we want to hide from can show us the way.”
— Ann Hood

Crossing the River grapples with an unbearable loss, one that no parent, or reader for that matter, ever wants to confront. Carol Smith dares us to enter this world of grief with her and by doing so gives us a vulnerable and brave story of resilience, hope, and healing that can only be found in communion with others.”
— Salamishah Tillet

“In our time of unprecedented loss, Crossing the River is a necessary book—a book about learning how to bear the unbearable that becomes a manual for living. I found myself copying many of its sentences down in a notebook, not just for their wisdom but also for their plainspoken and emotionally precise music. It is beautifully wrought, beautifully thought, and above all beautifully felt, and when I was done I didn’t just Carol admire Smith’s act of memory, witness, and rebirth. I was grateful for it.”
— Tom Junod

Crossing the River is a searing, luminous, and lyrical work. Carol Smith’s memoir is a meditation on loss and renewal that brims over with courage. At a rough moment for journalists, it reminds us that reporting put to its highest use can be one of the most powerful forces for good the world has ever seen. Ultimately, Crossingthe River is a compelling and eloquent memorial to the young son that Carol Smith loved and lost.”
— Dave Isay

"The heart-shattering grief Smith expertly weaves throughout the book reads like homage to Joan Didion’s The Year of Magical Thinking, but with the tension of Lacy M. Johnson’s The Other Side...each story guides Smith back to herself, and as result shows us all how to live after unimaginable loss." 
— Hippocampus Magazine
Product Details
ISBN: 9781419750137
ISBN-10: 1419750135
Publisher: Harry N. Abrams
Publication Date: May 4th, 2021
Pages: 272
Language: English