Ma Speaks Up: And a First-Generation Daughter Talks Back

Product Details
$24.95  $23.20
Beacon Press
Publish Date
5.6 X 8.5 X 0.7 inches | 0.7 pounds

Earn by promoting books

Earn money by sharing your favorite books through our Affiliate program.

Become an affiliate
About the Author
Marianne Leone is an actress, screenwriter and essayist. Her essays have appeared in the Boston Globe, Post Road, Bark Magazine, Coastal Living and WBUR's Cognoscenti blog. Her memoir, Jesse: A Mother's Story of Grief, Grace, and Everyday Bliss, was published by Simon & Schuster in 2010. Leone had a recurring role on HBO's hit show, "The Sopranos" as Joanne Moltisanti, Christopher's mother. She has also appeared in films by David O. Russell, Larry David, John Sayles, and Martin Scorsese. She is married to the award-winning actor Chris Cooper.
"I can think of few writers, alive or dead, who can make us laugh out loud in one sentence only to wipe the tears off our cheeks in the next. Marianne Leone achieves this brilliantly in this enduring love song to her Italian mother, illuminating themes as wide ranging as social class, immigrant life, the Catholic Church, the agony of adolescence, marital and maternal and paternal love, and far more. And like all of the best memoirs, Ma Speaks Up carries us back to the fragmented and sometimes elusive beauty of our own lives. This is an exquisitely rendered book by an immensely gifted writer, and I cannot recommend it highly enough."
--Andre Dubus III

"In this entertaining and moving memoir, Marianne Leone has crafted an indelible portrait of her immigrant mother. Like her daughter, Ma is a formidable person--salty, tough-minded, funny, and full of unexpected wisdom."
--Tom Perrotta, author of The Leftovers

"Equal parts funny, brash, poignant, insightful, sarcastic, joyful, hopeful, and tender, this book will make you laugh and cry. It will make you hungry for Ma's lentil soup. It will make you want to hug your own mother and Marianne and Ma."
--Ann Hood, author of The Knitting Circle

"I read with enormous pleasure Marianne Leone's book about her mother, Linda, envying the richness and mystery of the family history, at times frightening, infuriating, but also very funny. I finished it in one sitting. Thank you, Marianne Leone, for letting me live with you and your mother. I loved every moment, every word."
--Abigail Thomas, author of A Three Dog Life

"By turns tender and trenchant, this is an indispensable mother-daughter story, a blisteringly honest account of the thorns and brambles that divided an immigrant Italian mama from her talented, truculent actress daughter. Written with wit and verve, Marianne Leone's memoir brings her Ma back to full, vivid life in what becomes, in the end, a belated love poem to this enraging, engaging, passionate spitfire of a woman."
--Geraldine Brooks