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Review: 9 1/2 Narrow

September 1, 2016

9 and a half Narrow

Patricia Morrisroe has always been drawn to shoes and tells her life story through the shoes she’s worn.

While I can’t always recall the dresses or coats I wore on various occasions, I have a vivid memory of the white Mary Janes that represented my first shoe “crush”; the confirmation wedges that celebrated my entrance to adulthood; the red patent-leather Puma sneakers my husband sported on our first date; the gray ostrich flats I wore to a girlfriend’s funeral; the New Balance sneakers I bought my elderly mother, who was losing her balance and was too proud to use a cane.

9 1/2 Narrow: My Life in Shoes is Morrisroe’s story told in vignettes around the shoes that marked the occasions.  I’m going to admit to being shallow here and say that I was initially drawn to this book because I wear the same size shoe as Morrisroe.  Morrisroe’s story isn’t particularly unique but her way of telling it is and I was charmed by it.  She starts her story when she was ten and longing for a pair of white Mary Janes and ends it after the death of her mother and the discovery of her baby book in which her mother inscribed, “She loves wearing my shoes.”  In between, readers learn of her courtship with her husband and her difficult relationship with one of her sisters as well background on some well known shoe designers.

Morrisroe tells her story in a light, off-handed way and I found it to be a quick, fun read.  I could relate to her obsession with shoes and like the way she framed each story around a pair of them.  If you enjoy memoirs and/or shoes, you’ll want to pick up 9 1/2 Narrow.

Review copy provided by Penguin Random House.  I am an Indiebound Affliate.

16 Comments leave one →
  1. September 1, 2016 6:13 am

    Sounds like a fun book. It reminds me of my oldest son. If anyone took their shoes off or any were in his sight, he’d put them on and walk around in them. Sometimes he’d even try to take them off your feet.

  2. September 1, 2016 7:49 am

    I would probably love this book. I can relate to recalling particular shoes at important times in my life. That’s funny because I never thought about it before reading your review.

  3. September 1, 2016 8:01 am

    This sounds fun, but since I don’t care much about shoes and own like maybe three pairs total, I’m probably not the target audience for this one. 😉

  4. Diane permalink
    September 1, 2016 8:12 am

    At first as I read your review I was think g these were your shoe memories 😜😜sounds fun, I love good memoirs and shoes (9M)😍

  5. September 1, 2016 9:19 am

    It actually sounds like an interesting premise.

  6. bookingmama permalink
    September 1, 2016 11:41 am

    This sounds really cute!

  7. September 1, 2016 11:46 am

    Very clever hook, sounds like.

  8. September 1, 2016 12:34 pm

    How delightful! I am by no means “narrow” in my shoe size, but I also have fond memories of special shoes I loved over the years. Now, I tend to pick “comfort” shoes, but finding pretty ones are a challenge. LOL. So I tend to focus on my handbags.

    Thanks for sharing…

  9. September 1, 2016 1:47 pm

    I love shoes, even though I go barefoot whenever I can. I have to read 9½ Narrow! Thanks for bringing it to my attention. 🙂

  10. Literary Feline permalink
    September 1, 2016 3:20 pm

    I am so not a shoe person, but this does sound cute.

  11. September 1, 2016 4:16 pm

    I do love shoes

  12. September 1, 2016 7:24 pm

    Oh, Kathy! Your reason to pick this book up is as good as any other! This sounds like a book many women would pick up for similar reasons. I remember shoes and other articles of clothing that I wore on numerous occasions; they seem to hold the memories. I’m glad you enjoyed reading this book. 🙂

  13. September 1, 2016 7:24 pm

    This sounds cute! I bet they’ll sell a lot of copies to readers like you with the same shoe size 🙂 Such a unique idea for a memoir.

  14. Beth F permalink
    September 2, 2016 6:29 am

    This sounds like a lot of fun — perfect for a vacation or lazy afternoon.

  15. September 2, 2016 10:09 am

    How creative! This sounds like a great way to tell your story.

  16. September 9, 2016 8:02 pm

    I’m not sure this one is for me, shoes are the bane of my existence. I hate shopping for them. Now dresses, that’s another story….

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