Nancy Rappaport, author of In Her Wake, on tour July/August 2011

Posted By on May 2, 2011

About In Her Wake

• Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Basic Books; First Trade Paper Edition edition (July 12, 2011)

A delivery announcement on elegant paper stamped with the date of a daughters birth; a tarnished silver baby cup, dented at the rim; a lovingly hand-knitted sweater; a school committee flier; hurried grocery lists. This is all Nancy Rappaport had left to remember her mother, a woman defined by her absence.

In 1963, Nancy Rappaport’s mother died by suicide after a bitter public divorce and custody battle. Nancy was just four years old and the youngest of six children. Growing up in a blended family of eleven children after her father remarried, Nancy was bewildered about why her mother took her own life and left her behind.

Years later, encouraged by her own childrens’ curiosity about their grandmother, and fortified by her training as a child psychiatrist, Nancy began investigating her mother’s life and the mysteries surrounding her death.

Pursuing clues and following leads, Rappaport pieces together a complex mosaic of her mother. Drawing on court depositions, newspaper coverage, her mother’s unpublished novel, and interviews with family and friends, she uncovers the story of a conflicted and troubled activist, socialite, and community leader. She scrutinizes deep family secrets about a woman she only remembers in snapshots.

Rappaport intensely explores the impact of her mothers suicide from the perspective of a daughter, psychiatrist, wife, and mother of three – illuminating in the process the complicated nature of loss, reconciliation, and healing.

Inspiring, honest, and engaging, In Her Wake is a powerful testament to a woman’s search for answers and reminds us all that love lasts longer than death.

About Nancy Rappaport

Nancy Rappaport is assistant professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. She is the attending child and adolescent psychiatrist at Harvard teaching affiliate Cambridge Health Alliance, where she is also Director of School Based-programs with a focus on servicing youths, families and staff in public schools. She is the award winning author of In Her Wake: A Child Psychiatrist Explores the Mystery of Her Mother’s Suicide.

Visit Nancy at her website,

Nancy’s Tour Stops

Tuesday, July 12th: Stephany Writes

Thursday, July 14th: Rundpinne

Friday, July 15th: Unabridged Chick

Monday, July 18th: Reflections of a Bookaholic

Wednesday, July 20th: Books Like Breathing

Thursday, July 21st: Life In Review

Tuesday, July 26th: Cozy Little House

Wednesday, July 27th: Sidewalk Shoes

Monday, August 1st: A Chick Who Reads

Tuesday, August 2nd: StephTheBookworm

Wednesday, August 3rd: Bibliophiliac

Tuesday, August 9th: Seaside Book Nook

Wednesday, August 10th: Bookstack

Thursday, August 11th: Sara’s Organized Chaos


Leave a Reply

We see and read all comments, but we don't publish them. You can get ahold of us by leaving a comment or by emailing us at and