Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Reading lists - Mommy Lit

Mommy Lit = Chick Lit for moms!

Babes in Captivity by Pamela Redmond Satran
Satran weaves together the stories of four women who have been friends since their children were infants.  When one of the women announces her intention to revive her dream of becoming a singer, the rest of the group admits to feeling trapped by the confines of motherhood.  Together they decide to give in to the impulses they’ve long held in check, and the results are totally unpredictable.

Babyville by Jane Green
Julia thinks a baby will restore her flagging relationship with her boyfriend.  Maeve is a successful television producer with no intentions of starting a family.  Sam is a happily married homemaker who is thrilled at the prospects of having a baby.  See how their lives are changed in unexpected ways once they become mothers.       

Everyone Is Beautiful by Katherine Center
Uprooted from Texas to Massachusetts so that her husband can attend grad school, Lanie feels the pressure of raising her three sons in a strange new environment.  As a respite from housekeeping she enrolls in a photography class and finds much needed fulfillment, but sparks fly when her husband disapproves of her new hobby. 

The Hazards of Sleeping Alone by Elise Juska
Divorced mother Charlotte must adjust to an empty nest when her daughter goes off to college.  After dedicating the last fifteen years to raising Emily, Charlotte now feels adrift and purposeless because of her daughter’s absence.  A great Mommy Lit title for readers with grown children. 
I Don’t Know How She Does It by Allison Pearson
Wickedly funny and unflinchingly honest, I Don’t Know How She Does It is a wonderful portrait of the working mother in the 21st century. Heroine Kate Reddy attempts to balance her career as a fund manager with her duties as a wife and mother of two children. A perfect introduction to the genre of Mommy Lit.    

Julia’s Child by Sarah Pinneo
Pinneo’s first novel is a heartwarming and humorous narrative about the difficulties of juggling family and career.  Julia starts an organic toddler food business from her home because she wants to provide the best for her children, but as the business grows in popularity she seems to have less time to spend with her husband and two sons.  Fun Mommy lit with a culinary twist.

Little Earthquakes by Jennifer Weiner
Little Earthquakes follows the budding friendship of a group of women who meet at a yoga class in Philadelphia.  Becky, Kelly, and Ayinde at first seem to have little in common, yet the women are able to bond over their struggles as new mothers.  With relatable characters and realistic situations, Little Earthquakes is a masterful depiction of motherhood and its many challenges.

Mrs. Perfect by Jane Porter
Taylor Young appears to have everything— a charming husband, three outstanding children, a beautiful home, and all the other symbols of suburban achievement.  She’s the envy of all the mothers in Bellevue, but little do they know that Taylor’s carefully manufactured image hides a life that is on the brink of falling apart.

Momzillas by Jill Kargman
This clever satire of elite upper-class mothers tells the story of Hannah Allen, who moves from San Francisco to Manhattan when her husband receives a lucrative job offer.  Despite feeling wildly out of place amongst all the designer clothing, private preschools, and maternal one-upmanship, Hannah initially attempts to play the game, only to find the flaws beneath the fa├žade.

Multiple Choice by Claire Cook
Cook comes up with a clever conceit for this novel: a mother who is returning to college after 20 years and a daughter who is beginning her first semester at a different university in the same town both become interns for the local radio station.  Cook imbues this story of intergenerational conflict with a winning sweetness.

Piece of Work by Laura Zigman
Zigman puts a different spin on the Mommy Lit genre with her delightful tale of a contented housewife who must return to the workplace when her husband loses his job.  As Julie restarts her career as a publicist, she must overcome her longings to be at home again with her son and her slight jealousy at her husband’s natural talent for homemaking.

What Do You Do All Day? by Amy Scheibe
Jennifer is a SAHM— Stay At Home Mom— who is left to care for her two children while her husband is gone for three months on a business trip to Singapore.  Scheibe’s characters are a combustible combination of sass, style, and wit, and the novel reads like a mix of Desperate Housewives and Sex in the City

The Yummy Mummy by Polly Williams
Amy is suffering an identity crisis after having her first child.  She’s not sure if she wants to return to work, she suspects her boyfriend of cheating, and she feels chubby and unattractive.  Enter the confident and sexy Alice, a ‘yummy mummy,’ who leads Amy on a whirlwind ride of Pilates classes, makeovers, and shopping sprees.  Will she find happiness with her new life?

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