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In ‘Somehow,’ author Anne Lamott explores love in all its forms

Anne Lamott is the author of "Somehow: Thoughts on Love."
Anne Lamott is the author of "Somehow: Thoughts on Love."

Reading essays by Anne Lamott is like cuddling up with a blanket and a fresh-baked chocolate-chip cookie. And maybe a dog — or a cat who actually likes people. Lamott’s latest collection, “Somehow: Thoughts on Love,” is her 20th book, and every bit the comforting read we’ve come to expect.

In “Somehow,” Lamott draws from her own life and experiences to explore love in all its forms. For the first time in book form, she talks about the unexpected love she found with her husband, Neal, late in life. She examines the bruising love for a son whose drug use disappointed and frightened her, and the tough love and grace that helped him get sober. She also riffs on a soul-crushing Twitter saga in 2015, when Lamott used male pronouns to describe a transgender woman and was accused of being transphobic and bigoted. This one is especially poignant, as the author underscores how love enlightens and educates.

“Somehow” is classic Anne Lamott, with passages that beg to be highlighted, mulled over and shared with friends and loved ones.

I’ve adored Lamott’s writing ever since her classic “Bird by Bird,” a writer’s guide that recently marked its 25th anniversary, and “Operating Instructions,” which offered an honest and unflinching look at the first year of parenting. Her signature wit makes you both chuckle and sigh — somehow.

“Love is our only hope,” Lamott writes in this new collection. “It is not always the easiest choice, but it is always the right one … no matter how bleak the future looks.”

This book is the right choice, too.

Suzanne Perez is a longtime journalist covering education and general news for KMUW and the Kansas News Service. Suzanne reviews new books for KMUW and is the co-host with Beth Golay of the Books & Whatnot podcast. Follow her on Twitter @SuzPerezICT.