Wednesday, February 4, 2009

The Mistress's Daughter

The Mistress's Daughter
Author: A.M. Homes
Publisher: Viking
Genre: Nonfiction/Memoir
Amazon's rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Ennui's rating: 5 stars

What the book's about: When her biological mother makes first contact with her, A.M. Homes is thrust into a world where two realities now exist. The memoir follows her journey from gaining her biological parents, to losing them all over again, as she strands together the fabric of her personal histories.

Interesting quote:
But here it begins with a phone call: Your package has arrived and is wrapped in pink ribbons. The trusted pediatrician dispatched to the hospital to make an evaluation of the merchandise--think of movies where the drug dealer samples the stuff before turning over the cash. There is something inescapably sordid about the way the story unfolds. I was adopted, purchased, ordered, and picked up like a cake from a bakery. (P. 15)
Thoughts: Who are we and where do we come from? It's a question in all our minds at some point or another, but for a child of adoptive parents it takes on a whole other definition. Most of us take for granted what others may not have - a personal history. We all have the collection of family stories, myths, folklore we grew up and let it fade into our memories.

Normally, I never touch nonfiction books because I don't want to read about facts, but A.M. Homes has a way of writing, that no matter the genre, you know it'll be good just as long as she wrote it. You find yourself connecting with her, even though you don't fully understand her situation. When her tone changes from calm to anxious, your mind response to her. When glee transforms into a let down, you feel the strings of your heart yanked hard.

Following Homes on her road to meeting her biological parents - her mother needy, wanting to be taken care of, to be adopted; her father self-thinking, absent and at times uncomfortable - one may begin to wonder, "what if it were me?"

This book will never fade, as it shouldn't.

Monday, February 2, 2009

It made me want to commit suicide

Suicide Blonde
Author: Darcey Steinke
Publisher: The Atlantic Monthly Press
Amazon Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Ennui's Rating: 2 stars

Plot: Jesse feels the love Bell has for her slipping away so she embarks on a journey to separate herself from him in order to understand what true love really means. In the long hull, she wishes nothing but to return to her rather homosexual boyfriend.

Interesting quote: "Was it the bourbon or the dye fumes that made the pink walls quiver like vaginal lips?" (P. 3)

Thoughts: Probably one of the worse books on my shelf. The story line can be summed up simply: girl loves boy, boy loves boys and is still in love with his ex boyfriend, girl then searches for a girl that a woman named Pig loves, second girl arranges for first girl to be raped by a stranger, girl then reunites second girl and Pig and then embarks on a road trip to find boy's ex boyfriend. In the midst of this, there's also a scene where the boy, named Bell, arranges to have sex with Jesse, while an onlooker watches in the shadows; Jesse is never the wiser.

There were times in the novel that I wanted to put it down - as I had done so in the past, but I spent money on it, so I gave it a chance. There were times in the storyline where I expected something good to happen, or that Jesse would grow a brain and become semi-likable.