The Critical Importance of One Reliable Caretaker (click to read full article)
— Alice Kahn Ladas, Ed.D. Psychologist focusing on early childhood trauma. Co-author of The G Spot and Other Discoveries About Human Sexuality
“A probing, heartfelt memoir…about the true meaning of family… As Salz recalls her New York City childhood with Miss Hanna by her side, midcentury New York comes to life through her vivid descriptions; a chapter about her early love of Broadway musicals is particularly poignant… its greatest strengths are Salz’s self-awareness and her insight into the issues of class that often separate domestic caretakers from their charges.” (click to read full review) — Kirkus Reviews
Nancy Salz has written a beautiful memoir from the heart about her search to recover the nanny she loved like a mother, a woman who raised her and whose memory stayed with her long after the flesh and blood person had disappeared from her life. In an era in which many women rely on others to help raise their children – or work raising the children of others –this book provides a new and important perspective on this kind of relationship. We know that children bond to their caregivers. But Salz takes this universal truth and shows it in a new light, thanks to her particular and moving story of her relationship with Miss Hanna.
— Malena Watrous, Author of If You Follow Me
Nancy Salz’s Nanny: A Memoir of Love and Secrets begins and ends with the author’s relationship with Miss Hanna, a middle-aged lady who raised her from birth into pre-adolescence, as a professional governess, but a loving one—the only source of human warmth in a singularly loveless household. This brief, but powerful book goes far beyond the Salz home and offers an extraordinarily vivid and detailed account of Manhattan in the 1940s and 50s from the point of view of the young daughter of wealthy residents of the Upper East Side. The young Ms Salz’s powers of observation—of sounds, smells, and minute visual details—are almost superhuman, and so is the mature Ms. Salz’ memory and precision in translating them into prose. Anyone with a historical interest in the New York of these decades will find rich rewards here. And then there is the wrenching story of a prosperous, but deeply unhappy family and the woman who did her best over the years to care for its children.
— Michael Miller, Editor, Berkshire Review/New York Arts
Nancy Salz’s beautifully written, poignant story reminds us convincingly of the vital importance of at least one consistently attentive loving adult in the life of every child. Since improving mothering customs in the United States has been my professional passion, I cannot recommend it strongly enough.
—Alice Kahn Ladas, Ed.D. Psychologist focusing on early childhood trauma.Co-author of The G Spot and Other Discoveries About Human Sexuality
In this sensitively written memoir, Nancy Salz brings readers on an investigative journey into the tragic childhood of Salz’s own late, beloved governess. Nanny is a wonderful debut: the story of the intense bond between a child and her governess, and an account of how one woman’s attempt to understand the past leads her into a fuller understanding of herself. This is a book to be cherished.
— James Arthur, author of Charms Against Lightning