Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Book Review: The Goodbye Year by Toni Piccinini

Wisdom and Culinary Therapy? I'm in!

No, my children haven't suddenly aged at a rapid rate and become high school seniors overnight.  However, when they reach that age in ten years or less -yikes - I know I'll be thinking that it feels like they have grown up overnight!  So, while it may seem that my choice in an Empty Nest story would be a touch too soon for my household, I still couldn't resist gaining some early wisdom so I'll be prepared.  And honestly, I couldn't resist the Italian cooking portion of this book.  

First, the Wisdom ~ You'd expect it all to be about getting over saying goodbye to your child leaving the nest, blah, blah, blah.  But it's so much more.  This book isn't about goodbye; it's about saying hello to the part of you that had been pushed aside by prioritizing your children's needs over your own.  And as a busy mother of three, I know all about that.  Of course, you do so much for your own children - as every good mother tries to do each day. But, in her book, Toni reminds the mothers of the world to "reclaim the you of you".  

"The pain of saying goodbye is real enough, but it is not about your child.  This time the labor pains you are feeling are for the rebirth of you.  It's a long process, and you can do it the hard way or the less-hard way.  There is nothing easy about this."  

And now for some Culinary Therapy ~ The recipes nearly had me drooling on the pages - torta, risotto, gnocchetti, orzo ... need I say more! Each month had a new recipe to try that tied perfectly to the time of year and that month's "life lesson".  At first, I figured I'd skim over the recipes until I was ready to give them a try.  And then, I realized the recipes were as entertaining as the book.  They really did live up to their touting as Culinary Therapy. And who couldn't use some of that?

Whether you're surviving your child's senior year or not, The Goodbye Year, is an enjoyable read with a little something for every mother at any stage of the game.  And you can be sure, I'll be rereading it when my first "goodbye year" rolls around. (Sigh!) 

Here's more about The Goodbye Year:

The Goodbye Year is an inspirational, honest, and hilarious tale of Toni’s approach to the end of an era in the Piccinini household. For many mothers, a child’s senior year brings about a serious look back on the past eighteen. Every event—from Halloween to Mother’s Day—becomes The Last Time.

Toni Piccinini knows exactly what that’s like, and in
 The Goodbye Year, she offers the loving support every soon-to-be Empty Nester needs. Think of Toni as your bossy-but-loving Italian auntie, with modern sensibilities and a packed pantry. With the wisdom she’s acquired from saying goodbye three times to her own children, she reassuringly holds your hand while encouraging you through the insanity of the college application process, the rejections and the acceptances, and the teary dorm drop-offs. Even better, she reminds every mother that the best is yet to come—freedom, creativity, flexibility, and the Me Years.

Paperback:  264 Pages

Publisher:  Seal Press (September 10, 2013)

ISBN-10:  1580054862

Twitter hashtag: #TGYPiccinini

The Goodbye Year is available as a print and e- book at Amazon.

Meet Toni Piccinini

Toni’s writing career started when she  stapled her first "book" together and launched it at a reading attended by her brother, Scotty, and her Boxer, Lonesome. The title-less story was a mash-up of Hansel and Gretel, The Six Swans, and a Box Car Children adventure, with the protagonists (sister, brother, and dog) risking everything in their quest for a magical lump of coal that would save the town. It was an immediate success. During the fifty years between her first and second book, The Goodbye Year: Wisdom and Culinary Therapy to Survive Your Child's Senior Year of High School (and Reclaim the YOU of You)she has, in no order of importance or chronology
·        opened a "Top 100" San Francisco restaurant
·        published scientific articles on the efficacies of antibiotics
·        sang the National Anthem at high school football games
·        published essays, recipes, and cookbook reviews
·        sent three children off to college
Toni lives in Marin County California, which is a long way from her Western Pennsylvania hometown, Heilwood. She is busy on her next book, which may revisit the power found in a magical lump of coal.

The Goodbye Year’s Website:


  1. Thank you to Audry for hosting this WOW! blog tour and thank you to Toni as well. Both you ladies are a delight to work with!


  2. hey nice post meh, You are one of the best writers I've seen of recent. I love your style of blogging here. this post reminds me of an equally interesting post that I read some time ago on Daniel Uyi's blog: Self-Improvement For Year End .
    keep up the good work friend. I will be back to read more of your posts.



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