In “Blood: Twenty-Seven Love Stories,” which appears in The Crane Wife: A Memoir in Essays, forthcoming in July from Doubleday, CJ Hauser writes: “I want to learn from what went wrong in the past but sometimes it seems everything worth knowing has been redacted. As if ignorance is the only thing that allows each successive generation to tumble into love, however briefly, and spawn the next.” Hauser weaves together twenty-seven short sections that each tell the love stories, some sweet and others disquieting, of her parents and grandparents, as well as those of the author’s own life. The gripping narrative touches upon the themes of love, loss, fate, and sisterhood, as Hauser finds patterns in the way life’s love stories coincide with and contradict one another. Write an essay in sections connected by shared themes. Try, as Hauser does, to link distinct stories into a single narrative, tying the pieces together using common threads.
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