Apr 132020
 

Nobody Will Tell You This But Me: A True (As Told to Me) Story

Nobody Will Tell You This But Me by Bess Kalb

Bess Kalb, Emmy-nominated TV writer and New Yorker contributor, saved every voicemail her grandmother Bobby Bell ever left her. Bobby was a force–irrepressible, glamorous, unapologetically opinionated. Bobby doted on Bess; Bess adored Bobby. Then, at ninety, Bobby died. But in this debut memoir, Bobby is speaking to Bess once more, in a voice as passionate as it ever was in life.

Recounting both family lore and family secrets, Bobby brings us four generations of indomitable women and the men who loved them. There’s Bobby’s mother, who traveled solo from Belarus to America in the 1880s to escape the pogroms, and Bess’s mother, a 1970s rebel who always fought against convention. Then there’s Bess, who grew up in New York and entered the rough-and-tumble world of L.A. television. Her grandma Bobby was with her all the way–she was the light of Bess’s childhood and her fiercest supporter, giving Bess unequivocal love, even if sometimes of the toughest kind.

In Nobody Will Tell You This But Me, Bobby reminds Bess of the experiences they shared, and she delivers–in phone calls, texts, and unforgettable heart-to-hearts brought vividly to the page–her signature wisdom:

If the earth is cracking behind you, you put one foot in front of the other.
Never. Buy. Fake. Anything.
I swear on your life every word of this is true.

With humor and poignancy, Bess Kalb gives us proof of the special bond that can skip a generation and endure beyond death. This book is a feat of extraordinary ventriloquism and imagination by a remarkably talented writer.

Thoughts
This was a touching, emotional, funny book! I loved the relationship between Bess and her Grandma Bobbie. I don’t remember either of my grandmothers, they died when I was really young, but this is what I hope my relationship with them would have been like!

The book is based on their talks, phone calls, and texts. It made me laugh out loud and made me tear up, but mainly it made me miss my grandmothers even more than I always have.

The book is rated 4.8. Both women and men have rated this book 5★.  A lot of them read it in one sitting.

I think you should read it.

  22 Responses to “Audiobook Review:
Nobody Will Tell You This But Me by Bess Kalb”

  1. I don’t really remember my grandmothers either so this sounds charming to me.

  2. It sounds really good!

  3. Adding it to my audible list. It sounds fabulous!

  4. This sounds like a fun and interesting book, definitely a must during this pandemic!

  5. I loved it and if you read it, I hope you love it too!

  6. Oh this sounds wonderful and emotional. Definitely a book I need to add to my TBR.

  7. This sounds very touching, Vicki. Excellent review!

  8. I love stories of strong women.

  9. This sounds so good. My mom’s mother died before I was born and my dad’s mom when I was 12 but, I only saw her once or twice a year.

  10. I knew my grandmothers and I was very close to one of them. She cooked and spent time with me when I my mom was in the Hosers recovering, always teaching me something. I regret that I didn’t fully appreciate that when I was younger.

    This is certainly a book that appeals to me, wonderful review, Vicki.

  11. Ack! I should have proofread my comment! I meant hospital, not hosers!,

  12. This sounds so sweet and a lovely account of this family’s relationship.

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