Heart Berries

Heart Berries

Heart Berries is a powerful, poetic memoir of a woman's coming of age on the Seabird Island Indian Reservation in the Pacific Northwest. Having survived a profoundly dysfunctional upbringing only to find herself hospitalized and facing a dual diagnosis of post traumatic stress disorder and bipolar II disorder; Terese Marie Mailhot is given a notebook and begins to write her way out of trauma. The triumphant result is Heart Berries, a memorial for Mailhot's mother, a social worker and activist who had a thing for prisoners; a story of reconciliation with her father―an abusive drunk and a brilliant artist―who was murdered under mysterious circumstances; and an elegy on how difficult it is to love someone while dragging the long shadows of shame.

Mailhot trusts the reader to understand that memory isn't exact, but melded to imagination, pain, and what we can bring ourselves to accept. Her unique and at times unsettling voice graphically illustrates her mental state. As she writes, she discovers her own true voice, seizes control of her story, and, in so doing, reestablishes her connection to her family, to her people, and to her place in the world.

Title:Heart Berries
Edition Language:English
ISBN:9781619023345
Format Type:

    Heart Berries Reviews

  • Roxane

    Heart Berries by Terese Mailhot is an astounding memoir in essays. Here, is a wound. Here is need, naked and unapologetic. Here is a mountain woman, towering in words great and small. She writes of mo...

  • Emily May

    You should have thought before you made a crazy Indian woman your lover. It took me a while to settle into the rhythm of Mailhot's writing in Heart Berries. It’s very poetic, dreamy and beautiful...

  • Hannah

    I don’t think I have the words. I have been trying and failing to write a proper review for days. This book has rendered me speechless, so this will be a super short review.Terese Mailhot packs an u...

  • Debbie

    I did a total 180! I loved this memoir, then I didn’t.Mailhot is an indigenous woman with a traumatic past, and her heart-wrenching, raw story starts out as cool poetry. I felt like she was sharing ...

  • Michael

    In Heart Berries, Terese Marie Mailhot recounts her coming of age as a Nlaka'pamux woman in a society hostile toward her existence, while questioning what it means to ethically narrate the stories of ...

  • Elyse  Walters

    A Canadian Indigenous woman wrote about her madness- The writing is poetic-a memoir in essays - but what she writes is devastating- gut wrenching.The writing looks the way it does ( unique- uncut- dis...

  • Diane S ?

    3.5 A slim book, but a powerful one. A dysfunctional upbringing on a reservation, and indeed Sherman Alexie provides a glowing recommendation. Easily understood as Alexies own upbringing had some simi...

  • Elle (ellexamines)

    You think weakness is a problem. I want to be torn apart by everything. If you’re a fan of the writing in books like Carmen Marie Machado’s Her Body and Other Parties and Roxane Gay’s Difficu...

  • Richard Derus

    ETA $3.99 on Kindle! An amazing bargain.Shattering. Beautiful. Agonizing. Necessary.I will never, ever read this book again. I'm glad I borrowed it from the library so it will not be in my home. This ...

  • Thomas

    An emotion-driven memoir about a Native American woman's struggles with abuse, mental illness, and survival. Terese Marie Mailhot makes many astute observations in Heart Berries, including how white p...