The Smallest Things: On the Enduring Power of Family - A Memoir of Tiny Dramas

The Smallest Things: On the Enduring Power of Family
eBook ISBN: 9781783964161

It is easy to take for granted the things that are always around us, the people who are always there. And yet they often hold the keys to who we really are.

Nick Duerden’s grandparents were always just . . . there. A mysterious yet unchanging presence, a source of dutiful visits, birthday cards and carefully preserved rituals: lunches, dinners and endless card games.

But, as he enters midlife, and his 98-year-old grandmother enters a care home, he realises that, like so many of us, he should perhaps have paid more attention to her true worth years before.

As Nick goes in search of the secrets his late mother took to the grave, he finds it can be the smallest things that keep us together when so much is left unspoken. This is a memoir of the tiny dramas that fill all our lives, and a celebration of the special ties that can bind two intimately connected strangers. Tender and poignant, it captures the richness, and also the complexity, of family life.


‘Beautifully written, touching and searingly honest . . . An excellent read’ – Christina Patterson, author of The Art of Not Falling Apart

Praise for Nick Duerden:

‘Wise and tender’ – A. L. Kennedy 
‘Fascinating and moving’ – Cathy Rentzenbrink
‘Intelligent, incisive’ – Meg Rosoff