From the celebrated author ofRich and Pretty, a novel about the families we fight to build and those we fight to keepLike many first-time mothers, Rebecca Stone finds herself both deeply in love with her newborn son and deeply overwhelmed.Struggling to jugglethe demands of motherhood with her own aspirations and feeling utterly alone in the process, she reaches out to the only person at the hospital who offers her any real helpPriscilla Johnsonand begs her to come home with them as her sons nanny.Priscillas presence quickly does as much to shake up Rebeccas perception of the world as it does to stabilize her life. Rebecca is white, and Priscilla is black, and through their relationship, Rebecca finds herself confronting, for the first time, the blind spots of her own privilege. She feels profoundly connected to the woman who essentially taught her what it means to be a mother. When Priscilla dies unexpectedly in childbirth, Rebecca steps forward to adopt the baby. But she is unprepared for what it means to be a white mother with a black son. As she soon learns, navigating motherhood for her is a matter of learning how to raise two children whom she loves with equal ferocity, but whom the world is determined to treat differently.Written with the warmth and psychological acuity that defined his debut, Rumaan Alam has crafted a remarkable novel about the lives we choose, and the lives that are chosen for us....
|Title||:||That Kind of Mother|
|Number of Pages||:||291 pages|
|Url Type||:||Home » That » That Kind of Mother|
That Kind of Mother Reviews
I don't know if I'll ever recover from how well Rumaan Alam writes women. He does it incredibly well in Rich and Pretty, and he does it again in That Kind of Mother.
Of course, I can't relate to motherhood, but I can still relate to a lot of Rebecca and her world - sometimes in ways I don't necessarily want to admit, alas here we are. This book deals with a lot of issues, all with care and complexity. I remain a fan, and can't wait to see what comes next.
I went into this thinking that it would be an "issues" book, but it is far more than that. It is really a character study of a particular woman, a particular mother over time. That this particular mother adopted a child of another race was important and would certainly generate discussion in a book group, but what fascinated me was Rebecca herself, her feelings, her motivations. I won't say that I liked her, because I didn't, not always, but Alam made me want to know what she was thinking. Recom ...more
It is so much harder to review things I like. I just noticed that most of my favorite books from this year's reading are left without reviews - that's because when I like something, I often can't tell you why. Here's what I noticed about this book: I expected it to be more hard-hitting in the areas of cross-cultural or cross-racial adoption, but it wasn't (which was nice.) I also expected more stupid white people, to be honest, but all of the characters come with their own unique strengths and w ...more
This book was simultaneously beautifully written and intensely boring. I kept waiting for something to happen, but nothing really did. Even the big things that happened felt so small. I think the book was just too subtle for my liking. I think I would have enjoyed it more as a short story.
DNF at 48%
I thought I’d love this novel about a woman who adopts the child of her nanny after she dies during childbirth because two of my top recommendation sources (Annie Jones from From the Front Porch podcast and Tyler Goodson, Manager at Avid Bookshop in Athens, GA) rated it 5 stars. Unfortunately, something felt off. I had trouble connecting with Rebecca (the main character), the observations about motherhood were kind of all over the map (maybe because it’s written by a man??), and I just ...more
I didn’t pick this book up to read about a privileged white woman who never really addressed her privileged whiteness.
I forgot why I put this book on hold, so I didn't know anything about the story when I started reading it. It took a turn I did *not* expect, but when I finally read the book jacket it's right there! Maybe I will stop reading book jackets altogether because I enjoyed being surprised. Anyway, it turns out the publisher doesn't consider it a spoiler to say this is a book about a white woman adopting a black baby.
I got another surprise when I got to the author photo. I'd (wrongly) assumed the auth ...more
Alam gets motherhood so exactly right—the simultaneous and entirely opposed feelings, the physical sensations, the loneliness, the pleasures. The plot of this novel hums along interestingly, and the issues it tackles (interracial adoption, well-meaning but clueless white liberalism) are interesting, too, but I would have loved the book even if those elements were excised, leaving nothing but the paragraphs about breastfeeding and childbirth. And not that the tones are remotely the same, but in i ...more