How We Love: Notes on a Life by Clementine Ford

There are so many adages running through my head as I try to sum up the latest work of author and commentator Clementine Ford. Mainly though, I have Tina Turner’s words on repeat: what’s love got to do with it? Ford’s latest work, How We Love, is a memoir of sorts and shows the reader that, in fact, love has everything to do with who we are and why we are. Here in this surprising and eloquent book, Ford takes us by the hand and leads us through her own journey of heartbreak, joy and devotion.

Ford describes incidents of passionate love, moments of all-encompassing love and the steadiness of family. Her descriptions of her mother’s illness are heartbreaking. Her accounts of motherhood feel both universal and deeply personal. All these stories are told with such tenacity that I was forced to reflect on my own love stories, my own brand of hope. This is the power of Clementine Ford. She positions herself so firmly and honestly that you have no choice but to contemplate your own life.

We already know that Clementine Ford is bold. She is opinionated. But here in this roll call of her defining moments, she is also kind, persuasive and generous. How We Love also illustrates that the only way to survive love in all its forms is to prioritise self-love, and it’s a timely reminder of the importance of deliberation, humility, and compassion. Readers of other chroniclers of women’s stories such as Claire Bowditch will find a lot to enjoy here.

What’s love but a second-hand emotion? Well, Tina Turner, Clementine Ford shows us through her fierce narrative, that it is, in fact, all we truly own.


Chris Gordon is the programming and events manager for Readings.

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How We Love: Notes on a Life

How We Love: Notes on a Life

Clementine Ford

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