Paula - Margaret Sayers Peden, Isabel Allende
Essential reading for any and all Allende fans. I would recommend reading some of her fictional work (namely House of the Spirits) prior to reading this since this is a memoir of sorts - Allende tells her life story as she tends to her gravely ill and comatose daughter. In order to cope she began to write out the details of her life - ostensibly to share with Paula when she wakes (she never did). We learn about her uncle Salvador Allende's infamous political overthrow and her family's subsequent years in exile. And we learn about about her strikingly average life as a wife and mom before her literary ascent. I was totally enchanted by the candor, wit and humor with which she examines and shares her life.

Fair warning: This is a really profound and heartbreaking story. There were times when, as a parent, it was literally painful for me to read.