This Never Happened is a memoir served in small bites. Liz Scott looks back over a lifetime with her narcissistic mother. She uncovers old documents, remembers stories of stories, and in all of it reconciles this difficult relationship. And Scott surprises with her candor and humor. This book is easy to read even as the subject is hard. It is humanity, and I find pieces of myself in this memoir. Recommended By Doug C., Powells.com
Elizabeth Scott shares the achingly real struggle to understand her childhood and her narcissistic parents in her hilarious/beautiful/wrenching memoir, This Never Happened. Raging narcissism is the foundation of her confused childhood and continues into her acquiescent adulthood; there is no escape. But she works hard to excavate the truth of her life, overturning each insane interaction with her parents, looking for answers, looking for meaning. Told with an unflinching willingness to self-examine, Scott never gives herself a pass on suspect behavior. It's no wonder Scott eventually becomes a therapist; her lifetime of ruthlessly analyzing her own life is rich preparation for helping others. Told with raw humor, bracing humility, enough anger to light a fire, but ultimately with an abundance of love, This Never Happened is a deeply affecting and satisfying read. Brilliant! Recommended By Dianah H., Powells.com
This Never Happened is a mystery of the heart, an excavation and examination of the known fragments of a mostly unknown story. Piecing her way through the relics and memories of her very odd and broken family, Liz Scott writes with a voice that is fresh, frank, and generous, full of insight and wicked humor. This Never Happened is one of the best books I’ve read in a long time. Recommended By Gigi L., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
Like an archaeological dig, Liz Scott’s memoir This Never Happened goes in search of the answers to the mysteries of her family. In her relentless quest to uncover the truth, she mines photographs and letters, leaving no one, including herself, unexamined. This is a spare work… alternatively heartbreaking and darkly comic. In the end, it is about the struggle to clear away pain to make room for compassion, and the challenge of making peace with questions that will never be answered.
“Surprising, funny, and impossible to put down, Liz Scott’s memoir This Never Happened will break your heart with its calamitous wit and self-awareness. Scott’s elusive pursuit of familial truth and belonging haunts every page. A strange, unforgettable search for meaning.” Margaret Malone, author of People Like You
“Spare, elegiac, This Never Happened is a mournful and yet reassuring memoir of a family’s dissolution in the wake of a narcissistic mother and a father’s abandonment. Liz Scott writes with warmth and humor, bringing light to even the saddest darkness. This memoir is destined to be a classic.” Rene Denfeld, author of The Child Finder
“A remarkable hopscotch through memory and memorabilia to understand how the past shapes one’s present. An irreverent, relatable, compulsively readable creation.” Robert Hill, author of The Remnants
About the Author
Liz Scott lives in Portland, Oregon where she is a clinical psychologist in private practice by day and a writer of both fiction and non-fiction.