Congregation Beth Israel - Bellingham, WA

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For readers of All Things Consoled by Elizabeth Hay and They Left Us Everything by Plum Johnson, Kiss the Red Stairs is a compelling memoir by award-winning journalist Marsha Lederman that delves into her parents' Holocaust stories in the wake of her own divorce, investigating how trauma migrates through generations with empathy, humour, and resilience. Marsha was five when a simple question led to a horrifying answer. Sitting in her kitchen, she asked her mother why she didn't have any grandparents. Her mother told her the truth: the Holocaust. Decades later, her parents dead and herself a mother to a young son, Marsha begins to wonder how much history has shaped her own life. Reeling in the wake of a divorce, she craves her parents' help. But in their absence, she is gripped by a need to understand the trauma they suffered, and she begins her own journey into the past to tell her family's stories of loss and resilience. Kiss the Red Stairs is a compelling memoir of Holocaust survival, intergenerational trauma, divorce, and discovery that will guide readers through several lifetimes of monumental change.

"Meticulously researched, Kiss the Red Stairs is a potent mix of personal, familial, and world history; raw emotion and brutally honest self-reflection; and psychology and science, written with the confidence and clarity of a seasoned journalist and the frankness and vulnerability of a dear friend. [...] Kiss the Red Stairs is a fascinating read filled with depth, complexity, and even humour. "—Stir

"Kiss the Red Stairs is Marsha Lederman's memoir of her journey as the daughter of Holocaust survivor parents. It's an enormous achievement—harrowing yet ultimately uplifting. I wept and I also laughed—sometimes on the same page." —Ann-Marie MacDonald, author of Fayne

"Art can provide an element of witness on the killing fields of history and help redeem the human experience. This book [Kiss the Red Stairs] does just that, and does it in shapely, well-crafted prose. Highly recommended."—Vancouver Sun

"Kiss the Red Stairs is a complex and compelling memoir where Lederman weaves the strands of current and past traumas."—Pique Magazine

Marsha Lederman is the Western Arts Correspondent for the Globe and Mail. Before joining the Globe, Marsha worked for CBC Radio, mostly in Toronto, where she held a variety of positions, including National Arts Reporter. Marsha also worked in commercial radio as a reporter, newscaster and talk show host. Born in Toronto, she now lives in Vancouver.