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Book Review: The Other Mother

Taking the "Mommy Wars" to a more thoughtful level

by Jordan Sadler  |  4555 views  |  3 comments  |        Rate this now! 

Throughout the course of the book, it becomes obvious that both women are lonely for friendship and neither one of them is truly fulfilled by her choice. But they each feel that to openly admit the difficulties and imperfections of her life would only prove the other’s choice right and their actual experiences are therefore left unspoken. This rings true to life.

One of the most interesting moments in the story is when Thea and Amanda both let their guard down late one night, allowing themselves to comfort each other; their closeness rapidly becomes so strong that it evokes passion. I believe this symbolizes how desperately hungry women are for real connection and support from each other. The need for understanding and compassion is palpable both in this book and among women everywhere.

I found the story to be somewhat biased towards the stay-at-home-mother. Although Thea was not fully satisfied at home and desperately needed to make some changes, she rarely coveted her neighbor’s working life. Amanda, on the other hand, seemed to constantly question her choice to work, wondering if she should throw in the towel, and did not apparently find much satisfaction in her work. As a happy part-time working mom, this portrayal – though certainly true for some moms - was disappointing to me.

Overall, Ms. Gross has produced a well-written, thought-provoking novel that is an enjoyable read. Thea’s character development was particularly interesting to follow. I recommend it as an excellent choice for women’s book clubs and discussion groups.

Ed note: Jordan has an extra copy of the book. Leave a comment if you are interested in receiving a copy and she will devise a giveaway! 

About the Author

Jordan is mom to two wonderful boys and owner of a speech-language pathology private practice in Chicago, IL.

Read more by Jordan Sadler

3 comments so far...

  • Interesting review. I'm glad someone has addressed this issue in accessible fiction -- we all live it in our own ways, every day, but it's good to read about it, too, with symbolism and character development thrown in for fun! :) I'll have to read it sometime.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by el-e-e on 16th October 2007

  • Jordan - THANK YOU for such a thoughtful review. I've ordered the book, but not yet read it. We've also just interviewed the author and will be featuring the interview on Work It, Mom! in a bit.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Nataly on 15th October 2007

  • Thanks for such an in-depth review and commentary, Jordan. I've been looking forward to reading this one for a couple of months now.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Florinda Pendley Vasquez on 15th October 2007