Tender at the Bone: Growing Up at the Table Characters

Ruth Reichl
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Ruth Reichl

The narrative follows the life of Ruth Reichl from a precocious three-year-old to a well-established food writer. Ruth shows remarkable resilience and equanimity during an extremely trying childhood. Ruth's mother is mentally ill, but does not even try to be a good parent during her lucid phases. Her father is totally ineffectual and emotionally unavailable, focusing entirely on his wife. Ruth's mother abandons her repeatedly, first by taking a month-long trip to Europe and leaving Ruth with her bored grandmother, who has no idea how to care for a six-year-old. Fortunate, the grandmother dumps Ruth on Aunt Birdie, who provides the secure, loving atmosphere a child needs to thrive.

When Ruth casually complements her mother's command of the French language, Mom takes the opportunity to dump her daughter in a French-speaking school in Montreal. Ruth is completely unable to communicate with the students and teachers and desperately...

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This section contains 1,202 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Tender at the Bone: Growing Up at the Table Study Guide
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