She Ain't Heavy, She's My Mother
By Bryan Batt
(Three Rivers Press (CA), Paperback, 9780307588869, 288pp.)
Publication Date: April 5, 2011
List Price: $14.00*
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Gayle Batt is the kind of lady who throws elegant cocktail parties while wearing layers of silk chiffon, dripping pearls, and eight months’ pregnant. She is the kind of woman who says “anyhoo” and calls everyone “Dahlin’” or a special pet name. With hair, makeup, and nails always done to perfection, she triumphs rather than crumbles when infidelity, alcoholism, cancer, or any form of adversity attempts to shatter her family. Endearing and enduring, Gayle is a big-hearted, strong-willed true Southern belle—and she taught her son everything he knows about being a man.
In She Ain’t Heavy, She’s My Mother, Bryan Batt, the actor who plays Sal Romano on the Emmy, Golden Globe, and Peabody Award–winning Mad Men, chronicles his life—and his mother’s supportive presence in it.
From growing up gay below the Mason-Dixon Line to landing principal roles on Broadway (his first was on roller skates playing a singing and dancing boxcar in Starlight Express!) and later on the picture-perfect sets of TV’s Mad Men, to opening the ever-popular Hazelnut boutique in his hometown of New Orleans with his partner, Bryan weaves a touching and hilarious story of the South, showbiz, and an unshakable bond between mother and son.
“I always knew that Bryan Batt was a wonderful actor, but now it turns out that he’s a terrific writer as well. It’s just not fair. In She Ain’t Heavy, She’s My Mother, Bryan’s tales of his family, his New Orleans childhood, and his career are hilarious, beautifully observed, and touching. I’ve met Bryan’s mother, and he does her proud—they both deserve a float at Mardi Gras.”
“Bryan Batt has written an achingly funny and deeply moving portrait of his beautiful New Orleanian mother. This book is a cause for celebration, a Mardi Gras–sized celebration!”
“Bryan Batt’s childhood is like a mash-up of a Tennessee Williams play and a Mickey Rooney/Judy Garland movie. This memoir is a gumbo of fun, feeling, and fortitude in the face of all that life has to throw at you. A fairy tale come true!”
“Funny, honest, moving. A wonderful memoir from a fantastic, southern gentleman. Loved it! Don't miss this one.”