5.0 out of 5 stars
Fascinating Memoir Written With Great Candor.
June 23, 2015
By: Jeremy Kinser "guywoodhouse"
This review is from: And All The Queen's Men: A Memoir (Hardcover)
"Through graceful, vivid prose, Dale Engelson Sessa recounts her own compelling journey, which she begins as a sheltered, privileged young girl, who seems to have everything but soon finds herself an unfulfilled wife and mother. Through a series of relationships, documented here with great candor, as well as sometimes unimaginably horrific events, she ultimately finds personal contentment after emerging as a very successful businesswoman in her own right. At times Engelson Sessa reminded me of one of the female protagonists of Mad Men as they're confounded by the roles society expected them to play in a bygone era. She's a bit of Betty, always searching for something just beyond her reach, but with the gusto and business acumen of Peggy and Joan. Although she is a very complex heroine, her message here is very clear: Other people can’t make you happy until you’re satisfied with yourself.
To her credit, the author writes unflinchingly of experimenting with drugs, her own sexual awakening and, movingly, about caring for a friend dying of AIDS. In some ways And All the Queen’s Men is a companion piece to the late Paul Monette’s excellent Becoming a Man, but seasoned with a savory dash of Erica Jong’s Fear of Flying. I imagine that most women and a good number of men who came of age during the '60s and '70s will find Engelson Sessa's story not only riveting but completely relatable. It's well worth reading."