Replacement Child – a memoir
New York Times Best Seller
#1 Best Seller – Amazon / Memoir
Winner of a 2014 Independent Publisher Book Award
Replacement Child (Seal Press/Perseus, 2013) is the real life story of one family in the aftermath of the Elizabeth, New Jersey plane crash of January 22, 1952. The award-winning book follows Judy’s family through the loss of their seven-year-old daughter, Donna, the near death of their two-year-old, Linda, and the resilience and faith they called upon to have another child. Judy Blume explores the same series of three plane crashes in Elizabeth, New Jersey within 58 days in 1951-52 in her novel, In the Unlikely Event. The crash that hit the Mandel’s kitchen was the second of the three.
Judy Mandel is the replacement child for her sister who was killed. It would be years before she would understand how the tragic accident that happened before she was born shaped her life and her relationships.
In this powerful story of love and lies, hope and forgiveness, Judy Mandel tells the story of being the child brought into the world to provide “a salve for the burns.” As a child, she unwittingly rides the deep and hidden currents of her family’s grief – until her discovery of the truth, years later, changes her life forever, forcing her to confront the complex layers of her relationships with her father, mother, and sister.