A raw and riveting memoir, Disassembly Required invites readers along, moment by gut-wrenching moment, on one woman's journey from betrayal and devastation to resilience and recovery. From learning of her husband's affair, to family court, to life as a single mother, Beverly Willett perseveres in resisting injustice, the loss of her family unit, and the sale of the beautiful Brooklyn Brownstone her family had called home.
Willett knows selling her house will require taking inventory of her possessions; she does not realize it will require taking inventory of herself. But as she surrenders her hopes for a life that hasn't turned out the way she imagined, the world opens back up. And Willett leaps toward it, embracing uncertainty.
Disassembly Required is a story of quiet struggle and persistence. Unflinchingly honest in its examination of the discomforts of change, it celebrates the opportunities for transformation.
"Sometimes the best way to find yourself is to lose your husband, your home, your bearings—and start all over again, and that's just what Beverly Willett did in this ebullient memoir about giving up what you thought you wanted to find out what you really need."
"Ostensibly about the break-up of her marriage and loss of her dream house, a four-story Victorian brownstone in Brooklyn's Carroll Gardens neighborhood, Beverly Willett's absorbing memoir is really about finding a home in one's own skin. A delight."
"Disassembly Required is Beverly Willett's story of resurrecting her life after a devastating divorce. In it, she reminds us of the sorrow love can bring us as well as that love-of children, of self-really can conquer all. An uplifting and ultimately triumphant story."
"This is the book Sheryl Sandberg might have written if she hadn't been rich. Beverly Willett had the dream: husband, children, career, and that most important New York achievement, a house in Brooklyn. And then she just had. . .her kids. She didn't 'lean in,' she sucked it up, moved on, and built a new life. Disassembly Required: A Memoir of Midlife Resurrection is more energizing and inspiring than a triple espresso."
Book Review: Well Lit: Savannah writer Beverly Willett's intimate memoir, 'Disassembly Required,' tells the story of midlife reconstruction: "Willett’s writing shows the type of matter-of-fact vulnerability that can only come from surviving what was meant to destroy you. Even the most gut-wrenching of scenes have a level of self-awareness that expertly avoids pity. Moments of dark humor and wisdom shine throughout the narrative, which reads almost like a second coming-of-age story. Slowly, order returns to Willett’s life, and she’s able to rebuild, the satisfaction of surviving acting as the perfect foundation for a new life. . . ."
"In her inspiring debut memoir, Beverly Willett's account of a devastating divorce and its aftermath is both sharpshooting and poignant. Her ability to push through deep despair and reclaim herself while holding on to grace and wit will give hope to anyone starting over in life."
Interview with WSAV-TV host Kim Gusby, "Disassembly Required: Local author discusses memoir of midlife resurrection."
Barnes and Noble book launch named a top 5 event of the week in Savannah.
Featured Author, Decatur Book Festival, Labor Day Weekend, 2019
"Going through divorce later in life, with so much thrown at me all at once, became my quick path to figuring out that the source of my deepest pain was my attachment," Willett says. "You can never know what you're truly made of until you face your deepest fears and walk through them."
Powerful Women Studied These 49 Books in Detail
Book Review: "'Disassembly Required' is more about re-assembly than the predictable wallow in despair and recrimination...It's powerful...The book has a radiant ending: new life, refreshed spirit. A door opens, a window closes -- a cliché, but here it's true. "
On Jeeps: Writer Beverly Willett is the author of "Disassembly Required: A Memoir of Midlife Resurrection," which comes out in hardover on July 30. Although her most recent purchase was a black Jeep Liberty in 2005, she's been driving Jeeps for decades...."
I shouldn't have had to fight to be a stay-at-home mom. We need family-friendly policies.
The Adam Messer Show, WRUU 107.5, Savannah Soundings
"Will I Survive This Divorce?" Beverly Willett Chronicles Her Journey in a Moving New Memoir.
Book Review: Beverly Willett's Midlife Resurrection: "I felt a tension in the book between a seemingly hopeless clinging by threads, like a Jenga game a few blocks from falling, and the frightening possibility of letting it fall."
"What fifty years of no-fault divorce has gotten us"
"Surviving Midlife Divorce: From Disassembly to Resurrection"
"At times painful, this is ultimately a story of finding hope in the ashes when you have the courage to let go of the past and make space to embrace an unknown future."
"Reconstructing a Life and Finding Home After the Devastation of Divorce"
Book Review: "The house. . . It is everything to Beverly Willett. She will crush rocks, pull wagons, kill wild animals with her teeth if necessary --- she cannot move her kids from the house. The Flannery O’Connor quote at the front of the book says it all: 'It’s just about as poignant to be torn from a house as it is from a person.'”
Book Review: "Disassembly Required is not the revenge of a bitter divorcee [but] Willett, dare we say, moving on and letting go, in a lengthy process that is part Buddhist monk, part Catholic priest, part Marie Kondo. And she smartly wraps the story around her dream house...For anyone struggling with the aftermath of a divorce, Willett waits in these pages to be your friend."
"Celebrity divorces should not be news. They probably are because we want to feel superior."
“When Beverly Willett became an empty nester, she decided it was time for a fresh start. After a vacation to Savannah into permanent relocation, Willett felt inspired. ‘The words just flowed out of me, and I could not stop writing.’ She published her first book, Disassembly Required, in July.”
What Happened When I Agreed To Go On A Date With A Man Decades Younger Than Me.
WABC Radio, New York City, In conversation with Joan Hamburg about Disassembly Required. Listen here.
Like many Americans, my divorce destroyed my mental health and nearly drove me to suicide.
CNN's HLN Weekend Express with Susan Hendricks. Watch here.
When my husband filed for divorce, I was shamed for staying faithful to my vows
The Drew Mariani Show, Relevant Radio -- Fighting for your Marriage Listen to the podcast here.
The Daring Woman podcast with Tracey Osbourne. Listen here.
"Despite Losses, I Remain A Lighthearted Girl,"
Featured Author at the 2020 Dahlonega Literary Fesitval.
Featured Author at the 2020 Savannah Book Festival
Interview: "Disassembly Required is ... a spiritual journey as the author struggles to come to term with her relationship to items and attachments...Those going through difficult mid-life changes will find this book helpful and encouraging."
"Savannah Book Festival: Local author Beverly Willett is 'overcoming in her new book that's not a 'divorce memoir.' "
Excerpted in AARP Magazine, February/March 2020
Book Review: "In this debut memoir, a woman revisits the tumultuous period during and after the dissolution of her 20-year marriage, recalling her struggles to reimagine and reconstruct her life...The legal skirmishes surrounding the divorce offer an illuminating backstory that highlights the changing ethos in the family court system of the new millennium. Some readers may see it as a reflection of the “mommy wars” prevalent in today’s social media universe...The agonizing process of going through every cabinet, stored carton, and piece of paper forms the organizational structure of the intriguing narrative...[T]he articulate prose is solid [and] [r]eaders who have endured ;paring down' will find much here that resonates. An engaging account of an angry, sad, and ultimately triumphant journey to new beginnings."
Nominated, 2020 Georgia Author of the Year