May 8 2013
This month, the Kveller Book Club read the new novel The Mothers by Jennifer Gilmore (just in time for Mother’s Day, no less). Below, some Kveller contributing editors chat about the book, about the harrowing process of adoption, the essence of “motherness,” and cleaning up baby vomit.
Reminder: Be sure to join us for our Twitter chat with Jennifer Gilmore (@Jenwgilmore) TODAY from 12-1 p.m. EST. Follow along with #KvellerLit.
Adina: Hi, all. Since this book is called The Mothers, it makes sense to start with that totally loaded word. Early in the novel, the main character, Jesse, who desperately wants a baby and is struggling her way through the adoption process, begins musing on what a mother “does.” She says, “…[a mother] fixes the past from the future. If you cannot be a mother, how do you fix the way in which you were mothered…”
The thing is, I don’t think I’ve ever considered my role as a mother as being related to “fixing the past,” at least not consciously. However, I am constantly aware that with each passing day I am becoming more and more like my own mother without even trying. Maybe that’s what a mother does: she edits herself until she becomes a version of her own mother that she’s comfortable with. Read the rest of this entry →
May 7 2013
This month, the Kveller Book Club read the novel The Mothers by Jennifer Gilmore.
The story centers on a couple’s distressing journey through the adoption process. In the novel, Gilmore tackles the concept of motherhood and takes a hard look at marriage, too. What’s more, Jennifer and her husband were experiencing the adoption process while she wrote the novel and she has written extensively about their own journey. The result is that this book is vividly felt, hugely informative, and ultimately relatable to anyone who has wanted something so much its threatened to consume them.
We were lucky that she found some time between promoting her book and caring for her baby to chat with us about The Mothers. And what’s more, tomorrow from 12-1 p.m. EST, we’ll be hosting a live Twitter chat with Jennifer Gilmore. Be sure to join us by using the hashtag #kvellerlit at tweeting questions to @jenwgilmore.
In an essay titled, “What is Motherness,” for The Huffington Post you talk about how when a baby is adopted, the parents are “the same.” Can you talk more about that? Read the rest of this entry →
Apr 30 2013
One week from tomorrow, on May 8th, the Kveller Book Club will be chatting about the new novel The Mothers by Jennifer Gilmore right here on the blog. And then we’ll be chatting with Gilmore herself on Twitter (#kvellerlit, people!).
The novel, all about the extremely difficult and emotional process of adopting a child, is an honest and enlightening story based largely off Gilmore’s personal experience with adoption. To learn more about the book, check out Jordana Horn’s take on it here.
Or, if you’d prefer to get your book advice from child stars of the 80s, here’s Molly Ringwald’s review in The New York Times.
We’d love to have as many of you join us in our conversation as possible, so if you haven’t yet, grab a copy today and get reading! It’s available here on Kindle and in hardcover, and we promise it’s a quick and entertaining read.
Apr 17 2013
This month, the Kveller Book Club is reading The Mothers by Jennifer Gilmore. Learn more about the book below and then enter our giveaway to win a copy.
Jennifer Gilmore’s book The Mothers is not a memoir. Yes, Gilmore herself did go through the excruciating journey into attempted adoption covered by the novel, but this is not her story. The story she has written, however a fictional account, is deep, resonant, and powerfully real.
I’m a big reader, but it is rare, for me, that a book can so thoroughly sink me into the world of someone else’s circumstances and mind as The Mothers did. Gilmore is terrific at making her characters palpably real, warts and all. Jessie, a woman looking to adopt a child with her husband, Ramon, after a prolonged fertility struggle, is “prickly,” to be charitable. At times, she can be a bitch on wheels, whether to her husband, her parents, her friends, or to herself. Read the rest of this entry →
Apr 9 2013
We’re very excited to announce the next pick for the Kveller Book Club: The Mothers by Jennifer Gilmore. As if the title alone didn’t cue you in as to why we chose it, the subject matter of this brand new book is very close to Kveller’s heart. The novel centers around Jesse and Ramon, who, after years spent unsuccessfully trying to get pregnant, turn to adoption.
What results is an honest and powerful portrayal of adoption, with all of its complexities and complications, from a woman who’s been through it herself. Inspired by her and her husband’s own long adoption process, Gilmore based a large part of The Mothers on her own experience. For a glimpse into Jennifer’s world, check out this piece by her that we published today, about what it was like to find out her sister was pregnant, amidst her own struggles.
We’ll be hosting a book discussion with the Kveller editors on the blog on Wednesday, May 8th, as well as an interview with Jennifer Gilmore. Purchase the book at Amazon and a portion of the proceeds will help support Kveller and the book club. We hope you can join us this month as we read this wonderful book!