The Ugly Cry


by Danielle Henderson

“A strong, funny, heartbreaking memoir” (Elizabeth Gilbert) about a grandmother’s ferocious love and redefining what it means to be family

“Painfully good. I loved it.” –Jenny Lawson, bestselling author of Furiously Happy

“The Ugly Cry is the funniest memoir I have ever read. It is also achingly sad. And powerfully redemptive.” –Augusten Burroughs, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Running with Scissors

“If you fight that motherf**ker and you don’t win, you’re going to come home and fight me.” Not the advice you’d normally expect from your grandmother—but Danielle Henderson would be the first to tell you her childhood was anything but conventional.

Abandoned at ten years old by a mother who chose her drug-addicted, abusive boyfriend, Danielle was raised under the eye-rolling, foul-mouthed, loving tutelage of her uncompromising grandmother—and the horror movies she obsessively watched. She grew into a tall, awkward, Sassy-loving teenager who wore black eyeliner as lipstick and was struggling with the aftermath of her mother’s choices. But she also learned that she had the strength and smarts to save herself, her grandmother gifting her a faith in her own capabilities that the world would not have most Black girls possess. With humor, wit, and deep insight, Danielle shares how she grew up and grew wise, upending our conventional understanding of family and redefining its boundaries to include the millions of people who share her story.

Paperback | 304 pages | Penguin Random House | 2022

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