"The Fact of a Body is one of the best books I've read this year. It's just astounding."
— Paula Hawkins, author of Into the Water and The Girl on the Train
"This book is a marvel. The Fact of a Body is equal parts gripping and haunting and will leave you questioning whether any one story can hold the full truth." — Celeste Ng, author of the New York Times bestselling Everything I Never Told You and Little Fires Everywhere
Before Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich begins a summer job at a law firm in Louisiana, working to help defend men accused of murder, she thinks her position is clear. The child of two lawyers, she is staunchly anti-death penalty. But the moment convicted murderer Ricky Langley’s face flashes on the screen as she reviews old tapes—the moment she hears him speak of his crimes -- she is overcome with the feeling of wanting him to die. Shocked by her reaction, she digs deeper and deeper into the case. Despite their vastly different circumstances, something in his story is unsettlingly, uncannily familiar.
Crime, even the darkest and most unsayable acts, can happen to any one of us. As Alexandria pores over the facts of the murder, she finds herself thrust into the complicated narrative of Ricky’s childhood. And by examining the details of Ricky’s case, she is forced to face her own story, to unearth long-buried family secrets, and reckon with a past that colors her view of Ricky's crime.
But another surprise awaits: She wasn’t the only one who saw her life in Ricky’s.
An intellectual and emotional thriller that is also a different kind of murder mystery, THE FACT OF A BODY is a book not only about how the story of one crime was constructed -- but about how we grapple with our own personal histories. Along the way it tackles questions about the nature of forgiveness, and if a single narrative can ever really contain something as definitive as the truth. This groundbreaking, heart-stopping work, ten years in the making, shows how the law is more personal than we would like to believe -- and the truth more complicated, and powerful, than we could ever imagine.
In more than 35 years as a therapist, Forward has worked with large numbers of women struggling to escape the emotional damage inflicted by the women who raised them. Subjected to years of criticism, competition, role-reversal, smothering control, emotional neglect and abuse, these women are plagued by anxiety and depression, relationship problems, lack of confidence and difficulties with trust. They doubt their worth, and even their ability to love.
Forward examines the Narcissistic Mother, the Competitive Mother, the Overly Enmeshed mother, the Control Freak, Mothers who need Mothering, and mothers who abuse or fail to protect their daughters from abuse.
Filled with compelling case histories, Mothers Who Can’t Love outlines the self-help techniques Forward has developed to transform the lives of her clients, showing women how to overcome the pain of childhood and how to act in their own best interests.
Warm and compassionate, Mothers Who Can’t Love offers daughters the emotional support and tools they need to heal themselves and rebuild their confidence and self-respect.