In this week’s Wednesday Five: 5 new memoirs out this fall written by women telling their incredible life stories, their struggles and triumphs.
To honor her mother’s deathbed advice to head off breast cancer to “be there” for her boys, Krista Hammerbacher Haapala chose to trade healthy breasts for longevity and peace of mind. In Body 2.0: Finding My Edge Through Loss and Mastectomy, Haapala chronicles the personal research, medical process, bodily changes, and the emotional toll involved in the more than two-year odyssey of what she referred to as her “Body 2.0 vision quest.”
Through it all, Haapala shares her insights for living awake during even the darkest times, and captures the raw ebbs and flows she and her family experience in the face of her wrenching decision. She takes on body image, the sexualization of breast cancer, motherhood, and maternal relationships, as well as how to sustain an intimate, loving partnership. An unflinching, irreverent take on preventative double mastectomy, Body 2.0 is a guide to reframing adversity, finding inspiration, and shaping your own life.
What does an undocumented immigrant look like? How could she get into this country? What is the true price she must pay to remain in the United States? Julissa Arce answers these powerful questions in My (Underground) American Dream: My True Story as an Undocumented Immigrant Who Became a Wall Street Executive. On the surface, Arce’s story reads like a how-to manual for achieving the American dream: growing up in an apartment on the outskirts of San Antonio, she worked tirelessly, achieved academic excellence, and landed a coveted job on Wall Street, complete with a six-figure salary. The level of professional and financial success that she achieved was the very definition of the American dream. But in this brave new memoir, Arce digs deep to reveal the physical, financial, and emotional costs of the stunning secret that she, like many other high-achieving, successful individuals in the United States, had been forced to keep not only from her bosses, but even from her closest friends.
In this surprising, at times heart-wrenching, story of struggle, grief, and ultimate redemption, Arce takes readers deep into the little-understood world of a generation of undocumented immigrants in the United States.
Peggy Garrity began her life as a small-town Irish Catholic girl in the Midwest. Initially convent-bound, she became determined to escape a life like her mother’s, and in the mid-1970s she reinvented herself as a high-profile Los Angeles trial lawyer and single mother of four. At a time when there were virtually no women solo practitioners, she represented David against Goliath―and risked it all in the process.
Including compelling courtroom dramas featuring would-be presidential assassin Sara Jane Moore, celebrities Clint Eastwood, Sondra Locke, and Cheryl Tiegs, and some of Los Angeles’s most notorious murder cases, In the Game: The Highs and Lows of a Trailblazing Trial Lawyer is the groundbreaking story of a thrill-seeking solo trial lawyer―and single mother―who beat the odds at a time when working mothers, especially those in male-dominated professions like the law, faced the gauntlet of discrimination.