[reviews]

“Allende takes her readers by the hand and tells them of her own battles, bringing them into the turbulent lives of her ‘clan,’ as Allende refers to the cluster of relatives and close friends who surround her, and sharing with them the effort and the stories behind her books. This glimpse allows the reader to understand why Allende is drawn to telling stories of women with guts. The tone, reminiscent of conversations between good friends during a long walk, is intimate and raw, and so are the stories Allende tells. The book also reveals much about Allende’s approach to writing, which is in equal parts inspiration, hard work and catharsis.”
Seattle Post-Intelligencer


 “Ms. Allende…executes this epistolary memoir with the same authenticity and poetry that grace her fiction…[She] is a survivor worth reading and emulating.”
—Beatriz Terrazas, The Dallas Morning News

“[A] deeply revealing second memoir…Allende’s insight is keen, her prose polished and her language hypnotic…[T]he stories of her close-knit family…move the memoir forward…This is a book to savor.”
Publishers Weekly (starred review)



 “Allende’s trademark magical realism is ever present as she writes of Paula’s spirit throughout this book. This high-spirited, emotionally packed book enables readers to get a closer look at the life of a much loved writer—who even shares her schoolgirl crush on actor Antonio Banderas. Recommended for all literature collections.”
Library Journal

“Allende’s The Sum Of Our Days adds up to an exuberant love letter—not only to her daughter, but to her tribe and anyone lucky enough to belong to one.”
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

“A vibrant voice, which is at once introspective and forthright…An inspiring and thought-provoking work…the insights resonate, on page after page.”
The Denver Post

“Good news: Allende’s new memoir, The Sum of Our Days, is terrific. It’s funny, insightful, moving and filled with Allende’s unique voice. Her confiding tone invites readers into her mind, her heart, her family, her past. In the hands of a less gifted writer, [the book] could be an exercise in self-absorption and personal minutiae. Yet Allende makes it a satisfying heart-to-heart with a wise friend.”
USA Today


“Allende’s memoir voice is chatty, warm, humorous and humble, and, just as she does in her novels, she ends each chapter with a suspenseful flourish, making the book hard to put down…Any lover of Allende’s fiction will find clues to her inspirations and passions, and, best of all, be able to understand why she is so good at creating wise, kind, strong heroines—she has had to be one, simply to lead and love a family this tempestuous.”
Star Tribune (Minneapolis-St. Paul)




 “Thanks to Allende’s masterful storytelling, this memoir reads almost like fiction. It rarely lags. She’s as honest about her own failures and flaws as she is about those of the other members of the tribe. Allende’s own remarkable story continues to be captivating.”
Rocky Mountain News

“This record of a large, diverse family reads like a novel and is as gripping as a good thriller. Allende’s prose flows smoothly and inevitably. This memoir is varied and entrancing, drawing a reader in, lighting up not only a vivid group of characters but also the human condition.”
The Providence Journal

“Longtime Allende fans will feel privileged to have such an insider’s view of intimate family circumstances. [Allende] offers her devoted readers a no-holds-barred chronicle of a series of personal relationships and experiences, a vivid testimonial that paints a broad picture of an extremely complicated—and, yes, very dramatic—life.”
The Sunday Oregonian


 “Allende writes with striking candor and humor about everything from her rigorous writing schedule—she starts every book on Jan. 8, the day she began The House of the Spirits, and writes 10 to 12 hours a day—to her plastic surgery…The strength of the characters Allende gathers around her, and the strength of her love for her homemade American family, make this clan gathering one that her fans will be reluctant to leave.”
The Christian Science Monitor

“Sickness, death, glee, panic, pain, delight, love, loathing—it’s all here in Allende’s warm prose that can reach to the heart in one sentence and tickle your funny bone in the next.”
The Florida Times–Union

“In her memoirs, we get a glimpse into the passion and loves of Allende. This is the story of a remarkable woman and artist.”
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel