When Suzanne Maggio’s vivid, demanding, and self-absorbed mother develops dementia, Suzanne is compelled to apply the wisdom she’s acquired from decades of experience as a family therapist to her own family of origin. The Cardinal Club: A Daughter’s Journey to Acceptance is a memoir that will engage and move readers even as it invites them to ponder how they might attempt to come to terms with the unfinished business within their own families.
— Jean Hegland, author of Into the Forest, Windfalls, The Life Within and Still Time.


The Cardinal Club

Coming December 1, 2019 from Adelaide Books

I loved this beautifully detailed, tender, compassionate rexamination of a complex mother/daughter relationship. The Cardinal Club is written with graceful prose and kindness — a guidebook to rethinking self-worth through our reactions to loss and grief. I especially enjoyed Suzanne Maggio’s nostalgic and moving depiction of her New Jersey Italian/American childhood in the 1960s and 70s.
— Frances Rivetti, Independent Journalist, IPPY Award Winning Author of Fog Valley Crush and Fog Valley Winter.


Sample Chapter: The Cardinal Club

A Daughter’s Journey To Acceptance


Although I’ve spent more than thirty years helping families face the stories they could not face, I could not face my own. 

It was the fall of 1991. I was a young social worker, married for five years and pregnant with my first child.  While I tried to appear calm, my stomach was doing flip-flops, the way it so often did when I was about to speak my truth. I tugged at the blue cotton sundress that stretched across my growing stomach and tightened my grip around the scroll of butcher paper that lay in my lap. Was I ready to share my story?


This is an astounding book. I learned so much that  I wanted to buy copies for everybody I know.
— Adair Lara, author of Naked Drunk and Writing, The Granny Diaries and Hold Me Close, Let Me Go.