Sep 082022

On the Ledge by Amy TurnerOn the Ledge: A Memoir by Amy Turner

Publisher: She Writes Press, (September 6, 2022)
Category: Memoir, Dysfunctional Families, Mental Wellness
Tour dates: September 6, 2022-October 7, 2022
ISBN: 978-1647422257
Available in Print and ebook, 256 pages

On the Ledge

Description On the Ledge by Amy Turner

In 1957, when Amy Turner was four years old, her father had to be talked down from a hotel ledge by a priest. The story of his attempted suicide received nationwide press coverage, and he spent months in a psychiatric facility before returning home. From then on, Amy constantly worried about him for reasons she didn’t yet fully understand, triggering a pattern of hypervigilance that would plague her into adulthood.

In 2010, fifty-five years after her father’s attempted suicide, Amy—now a wife, mother, and lawyer-turned-schoolteacher—is convinced she’s dealt with all the psychological reverberations of her childhood. Then she steps into a crosswalk and is mowed down by a pickup truck—an accident that nearly kills her, and that ultimately propels her on a remarkable emotional journey. With the help of Chinese Medicine, Somatic Experiencing, and serendipities that might be attributed to grace, Amy first unravels the trauma of her own brush with death and then, unexpectedly, heals the childhood trauma buried far deeper.

Poignant and intimate, On the Ledge is Amy’s insightful and surprisingly humorous chronicle of coming to terms with herself and her parents as the distinct, vulnerable individuals they are. Perhaps more meaningfully, it offers proof that no matter how far along you are in life, it’s never too late to find yourself.

This book caught my attention right from the start and gave me all kinds of emotions. It’s a very personal look at the authors life from a very young age when her father attempted suicide. I can’t imagine my family and I having to go through that, especially going through it at the age of four. The incident also puts her family on an emotional journey. Years later the author had her own brush with death when she was hit by a truck. As she goes thru a few different types of therapies, she starts to heal.

This book is very sad at times and at other times it is funny. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed the book. I loved the writing style of the author and the flow. It was like sitting next to someone and listening to them talk. I didn’t want to put the book down until I read the last word.

I would definitely read more from this author.

Advance Praise On the Ledge by Amy Turner

“. . . an intriguing memoir . . . that many readers will find relatable. . . . A frank and engaging portrait of one family’s struggles with mental illness.”—Kirkus Reviews

“In lyrical and vivid prose, Amy Turner reckons with her family secrets and how they dug their roots deep into her psyche. With trauma as the inciting force, Turner courageously comes to terms with her past and present, showing us how choosing to lean into the scars can reveal paths forward. On the Ledge is a compelling read, told with grace, vulnerability, and depth.”—Rachel Michelberg, author of Crash: How I Became a Reluctant Caregiver

“This remarkable story of a woman’s journey toward healing after a random, shocking accident takes us back in time into the home of an unusual family and the seminal event that shaped them all. In peeling back layers of trauma and revisiting key moments from her past, Turner comes to a new understanding of what it means to be a daughter, a mother, a woman, and a seeker of truth. This is a riveting story of courage and redemption. And dare I say that parts of it are very, very funny?”—Hope Edelman, #1 New York Times best-selling author of Motherless Daughters and The AfterGrief

On the Ledge is an extraordinary memoir of the way trauma harms both body and soul. Amy Turner’s near-miss with death at the age of fifty-seven propels her on a journey back through family history, leading to a new understanding of how her father’s attempted suicide and her mother’s determination to ‘move on’ has shaped—and limited—her since the age of four. Inspirational and beautifully told.”—Susan Scarf Merrell, author of Shirley: A Novel, now a major motion picture

“Absorbing, direct, humorous, horrific, On the Ledge explores the edge of madness as an artful memoir that also addresses two growing contemporary concerns: suicide and addiction. Timely, significant, well written, this is a courageous and engaging account, neither didactic nor sentimental, that belongs on school shelves as well as in the home.”
Joan Baum, host of NPR’s Baum on Books

About Amy TurnerOn the Ledge by Amy Turner

Amy Turner was born in Bronxville, New York, and is a graduate of Boston University, with a degree in political science, and of New York Law School, with a Juris Doctor Degree. After practicing law (rather unhappily) for twenty-two years, she finally found the courage to change careers at forty-eight and become a (very happy) seventh grade social studies teacher.

A long-time meditator and avid reader who loves to swim and bike, Amy lives in East Hampton, New York, with her husband, Ed, to whom she’s been married for forty years. They have two sons. On the Ledge is Amy’s first book.


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Giveaway On the Ledge by Amy Turner

This giveaway is for 2 print copies and is open to the U.S. only. This giveaway ends on October 5, 2022 midnight, pacific time. Entries accepted via Rafflecopter only.

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On the Ledge by Amy Turner

 Posted by at 6:17 AM

  21 Responses to “On the Ledge: A Memoir by Amy Turner & Giveaway”

  1. That sounds like an intense book. Great review, Vicki!

  2. I can only imagine the long lasting emotional trauma an event like this would have on a young girl early on. I have a friend whose dad committed suicide when she was 8, the oldest of 3 kids at the time and at almost 60, she is still troubled by that event.

    • I can’t imagine going through that. I was in my 30’s when my mom and dad passed and it’s still painful, as is loosing my dog Patches in ’17. I think the pain of losing a loved one or pet is something that may ease, but never go away. And suicide, how would you ever get over that? I think that would mess with your mind. Thoughts like “why didn’t they love me enough to stay with me” or “did I do something to make them not love me enough”. So sad!

    • Diane,
      I am so sorry for your friend. I can imagine how it still troubles her. I hopes he’s gotten some good help in processing that tragic trauma.

  3. So glad for this woman that she was able to work through her buried traumas. It’s an ongoing process. I am still sometimes surprised at things that come up for me. Also glad that she left a career she did not like and found something more fulfilling!

    • I’m glad she did too! I agree that the past should stay in the past and not hinder our present. Sometimes thoughts pop up out of nowhere. For me it’s usually when I wake up in the middle of the night. My mind will keep me from going back to sleep easily.

    • Thank you, Shari (and Vicki). I totally agree–dealing with trauma is a lifelong process, and though difficult, can lead to such important growth. An, yes, I’m so glad I finally switched careers!

  4. I am so glad you enjoyed ‘On the Ledge’. I remember when I was about 7 my father and his friend, Bob brought myself and Bobs son to an amusement park. We had such a great time. Then a week later they my sister told me Bob died of suicide. I still think of him all these years later. He was a really kind man.

    • So sad! My sister was a Psychologist and she said most depressed people hide it so well that you’d never imagine they had those feelings. I wish they would get help. Losing someone is always very hard, but suicide add so much more to those feelings.

      Thank you for including me in this tour!

  5. Man that accident sounds so awful. This poor woman! I can’t imagine the pain of that. I hope she recovered fully …. she seems to have persevered.

  6. It’s amazing the impact events can have on us even when we are only 4 years old and may not even really remember the details. The emotional impact is so great.

  7. Wow, that sounds like quite the book!!

    Thank you for your kind words about the loss of our Rascal.

  8. This sounds like such a moving and interesting book. I will have to look for it.

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