Don't Sing at the Table: Life Lessons from My Grandmothers

Don't Sing at the Table: Life Lessons from My Grandmothers

by Adriana Trigiani

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Overview

"No one ever reads just one of Trigiani’s wonderfully quirky tales. Once you pick up the first, you are hooked.” —BookPage

New York Times bestselling author Adriana Trigiani shares a treasure trove of insight and guidance from her two grandmothers: time-tested, common sense advice on the most important aspects of a woman’s life, from childhood to the golden years. Seamlessly blending anecdote with life lesson, Don’t Sing at the Table tells the two vibrant women’s real-life stories—how they fell in love, nurtured their marriages, balanced raising children with being savvy businesswomen, and reinvented themselves with each new decade. For readers of Big Stone Gap, Very Valentine, Lucia, Lucia, and Rococo, this loving memoir is the Trigiani family recipe for chicken soup for the soul

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780061958953
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 10/04/2011
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 269,386
Product dimensions: 7.94(w) x 5.36(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

Beloved by millions of readers around the world for her "dazzling" novels, (USA Today) Adriana Trigiani is “a master of palpable and visual detail” (Washington Post) and “a comedy writer with a heart of gold” (New York Times). She is the New York Times bestselling author of eighteen books in fiction and nonfiction, published in 38 languages, making her one of the most sought after speakers in the world of books today.

Adriana is also an award-winning film director and screenwriter, playwright, and television writer and producer. Her screen adaptation of her bestselling novel Very Valentine premiered on Lifetime television in June 2019, launching their National Book Club. In 2018, she directed the feature film Then Came You, filmed on location in the Highlands of Scotland. She wrote and directed the award-winning major motion picture Big Stone Gap, based on her debut novel, filmed entirely on location in her Virginia hometown. Big Stone Gap spent 11 weeks in theatres in the fall of 2015 and was the #2 top-grossing romantic comedy of the year. She wrote and directed the documentary film, Queens of the Big Time, winner of the Audience Award at the Hamptons and Palm Springs International Film Festivals. Adriana co-founded The Origin Project, an in-school writing program which serves over 1,700 students in the Appalachian Mountains of Virginia. She lives in New York City with her family.

Join Adriana on Facebook and Instagram @AdrianaTrigiani or visit her website: AdrianaTrigiani.com

Customer Reviews

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Don't Sing at the Table 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 46 reviews.
imarose More than 1 year ago
This book is a wealth of knowledge that will enrich everyones life in one way or another. Grandmothers, in this case, Ms. Trigiani's, having lived their lives using common and uncommon sense as the case may be, impart their wisdom to those who came after them. Italian grandmothers always feel an obligation to teach whether it be how to make a pie or how to boil water for pasta. No matter what your ethnic background grandmothers always have great advice to offer since they've experienced life and all that goes with it. Treasure every word they say because it's as pertinent in this day and age as it was in theirs. DON'T SING AT THE TABLE is much more than just about not singing. It is a treasury of life significantly enhanced by the author's recollections and understanding - and love - of her grandmothers' experiences in their lives and of her applying them to her life today. She was fortunate to have had first hand instruction from grandmothers, Lucy and Viola, and now we're the lucky recipients of all that she recalls. What impressed me the most - because I, too, had sage Italian grandmothers - was Ms. Trigiani's emphasis on how we react to situations in life. I think a lot if not all of the end results are due to our reactions. Don't pass up this true to life, non fiction work of art.
bookchickdi More than 1 year ago
Fans of Adriana Trigiani's novels will recognize the women in her non-fiction book- her grandmothers Lucy and Viola have appeared in many of the characters in her fiction. Not only does Trigiani do a marvelous job of recounting the fascinating life stories of these women, she uses their lives to write a primer for living your own life. Women like Lucy and Viola are the people who made this country great, and they jump off the pages in this delightful book. They have more than their fair share of troubles, (both of them are widowed), but their sheer will and strength of character will inspire other women to persevere and succeed as they did. Although she is an Italian immigrant, Lucy moves to Minnesota and takes on the stoic characteristics of American midwesterners. She loses her husband at an early age and raises her three children on her own, all while running her own business. Viola was a pistol, running her own clothing factory, raising her family, entertaining friends in her lovely home, traveling. Both women had terrific advice for their granddaughter, and the way that Trigiani structures the book, first telling their life stories, then sharing the how living their lives were examples we could all follow today, makes this book so enjoyable. DON'T SING AT THE TABLE would make a great gift for the women in your life, both those starting out and those whose wisdom should be shared with their own families.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The author shares many, many Life Lessons and loads and loads of advise based on the lives of her much loved grandmothers. I very much enjoyed the stories of the grandmothers lives. But...I have to admit I finally tired of all the "how to" advise and found myself skipping much of the last 30 or so pages. I will add I am a reader in the older generation. Perhaps that is why I was not so fond of the detailed how to raise a child, run a house, lessons on manners, etc.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is a charming blend of family history with a sense of nostalgia for days gone by. Trigiani has crafted a book worthy of reading. I'd also recommend that you buy "When God Stopped Keeping Score," which takes an intimate look at the power of God and forgiveness. This book will change your life.
BookishDame on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
What a treasure of a small book this is. I stayed up into the wee hours of the night because I just couldn't tear myself away from the story of Viola and Lucy and how they operated in the world. To say that Adriana Trigiani benefited from having them as grandmothers is an understatement. I loved that both grandmothers had a strong interest in some area of dressmaking. Viola in the heart and hard work of factory sewing, and then her own blouse-making business; and Lucy in her devotion to clients and perfection when she became a "storefront couturier." Talented and beautiful women, they understood the value and power behind a women dressed well in perfectly fitted, classic clothing. They also understood that keeping up their skin/beauty routine, social standing and family reputations were tantamount to good life, good health and good self-esteem; among other important things. It seems Adriana learned so much from them about integrity and self-respect, there's no doubt about that. But, she also learned the value of manners, of going after what you want, of having a purpose in life, of minding your reputation. The specifics of these lessons are ones you'll be delighted to read. I thought it was delightful and serious at the same time to read Lucy's lessons first on romantic love, then on keeping a marriage strong. Hers is practical wisdom. Her instructions on raising children are some we absolutely could use today. I particularly liked her dictum never to burden a child with adult problems. That lesson alone would change the mental health of so many children in these times. There is so much to this book. It's humorous, it's character building, it's serious and it's a lesson book on how to live a life with wisdom. What a blessing Adriana Trigiani had in these two lovely women. No wonder she's a bestselling author with fragments of these things to share with her readers. Those of us who had grandmothers like Viola and Lucy will enjoy reading about them and, possibly, taking a nostalgic trip back to our own childhoods. Those of you who didn't have grandmothers like them will gain something very special in the reading. 5 perfectly heartwarming stars
bookchickdi on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Fans of Adriana Trigiani's novels will recognize the women in her non-fiction book- her grandmothers Lucy and Viola have appeared in many of the characters in her fiction. Not only does Trigiani do a marvelous job of recounting the fascinating life stories of these women, she uses their lives to write a primer for living your own life. Women like Lucy and Viola are the people who made this country great, and they jump off the pages in this delightful book. They have more than their fair share of troubles, (both of them are widowed), but their sheer will and strength of character will inspire other women to persevere and succeed as they did. Although she is an Italian immigrant, Lucy moves to Minnesota and takes on the stoic characteristics of American midwesterners. She loses her husband at an early age and raises her three children on her own, all while running her own business. Viola was a pistol, running her own clothing factory, raising her family, entertaining friends in her lovely home, traveling. Both women had terrific advice for their granddaughter, and the way that Trigiani structures the book, first telling their life stories, then sharing the how living their lives were examples we could all follow today, makes this book so enjoyable. DON'T SING AT THE TABLE would make a great gift for the women in your life, both those starting out and those whose wisdom should be shared with their own families.
delphimo on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Trigiani presents an entertaining book about lessons learned from her two Italian grandmothers. I enjoyed the lightness of the lesson and the family photographs. How fortunate to have two strong grandmothers as role models. As an amateur genealogist, I am amazed to see two women who worked outside the home, and still maintained a household. The majority of women in the 1920's through the 1950's were housewives and "stay-at-home" mothers, yet these two women worked outside the home as owners of their own business. The author shows awe, love, and kindness in her presentation of her two grandmothers. These two workingwomen not only provided financial support to their families, but also gave emotional support, and still had time to devote to children and grandchildren. Their simple lessons about love, finance, work, and family seem forgotten today.
jcwlib on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I heard Adriana speak at two library conferences and enjoyed her stories immensely, but I hadn't read any of her books. Curious to learn more about her and her family, I decided to read this book first. At first I had a hard time getting into the book and relating to her stories, but as I got further into the book I found a few connections. It turns out her one grandmother grew up & lived 20 minutes north of where I grew up. Both my grandmothers were at one time in their lives seamstresses just like her grandmothers. Her grandmothers were very independent (in their own way) and strong women. I can see how Adriana looked up to them and emulates them in her own life.The first three chapters were written in a different style than the rest of the book. So much so that I stopped halfway through and went back to the first couple of chapters and made sure I wasn't dreaming it. I liked the little vignettes around a piece of advice from one of the grandmothers better than just straight prose. I can see how in order to fill in the reader on her grandmothers' upbringing straight prose worked the best. Adriana shared how different philosophies she learned from her grandmothers' applied to her own life. At times I felt the "applications" were forced and didn't flow with the rest of the chapter. I appreciated the family photos throughout the chapters as well.The initial story in the afterword was very touching, but I felt the rest of the afterword again didn't "fit" into the tone of the rest of the book. Maybe I had different expectations for this book. Adriana is a great storyteller, which I knew from the in-person talks I've seen in the past, but I felt the book didn't flow as best as it could have. I would recommend this book to readers that have looked up to their grandmothers and emulated them in their own life.
Two2dogs More than 1 year ago
Oh I loved this book, could relate to my two Grandmothers, wonderful book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
MBAudrey More than 1 year ago
A cherished trip down memory lane for Trigiani. An account of generations before that many will enjoy, Italian descent or not.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Interesting how the author's grandmothers lived and were independent in an era when this was not that common, but not a great read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Humbee More than 1 year ago
What a treasure of a small book this is. I stayed up into the wee hours of the night because I just couldn't tear myself away from the story of Viola and Lucy and how they operated in the world. To say that Adriana Trigiani benefited from having them as grandmothers is an understatement. I loved that both grandmothers had a strong interest in some area of dressmaking. Viola in the heart and hard work of factory sewing, and then her own blouse-making business; and Lucy in her devotion to clients and perfection when she became a "storefront couturier." Talented and beautiful women, they understood the value and power behind a women dressed well in perfectly fitted, classic clothing. They also understood that keeping up their skin/beauty routine, social standing and family reputations were tantamount to good life, good health and good self-esteem; among other important things. It seems Adriana learned so much from them about integrity and self-respect, there's no doubt about that. But, she also learned the value of manners, of going after what you want, of having a purpose in life, of minding your reputation. The specifics of these lessons are ones you'll be delighted to read. I thought it was delightful and serious at the same time to read Lucy's lessons first on romantic love, then on keeping a marriage strong. Hers is practical wisdom. Her instructions on raising children are some we absolutely could use today. I particularly liked her dictum never to burden a child with adult problems. That lesson alone would change the mental health of so many children in these times. There is so much to this book. It's humorous, it's character building, it's serious and it's a lesson book on how to live a life with wisdom. What a blessing Adriana Trigiani had in these two lovely women. No wonder she's a bestselling author with fragments of these things to share with her readers. Those of us who had grandmothers like Viola and Lucy will enjoy reading about them and, possibly, taking a nostalgic trip back to our own childhoods. Those of you who didn't have grandmothers like them will gain something very special in the reading. 5 perfectly heartwarming stars
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
hikermom More than 1 year ago
For someone who remembers generations of their family. This is a wonderful read. I have read the majority of her books and like her writing style.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago