MotherKind: a novel

Front Cover
Knopf, 2000 - Fiction - 295 pages
11 Reviews
From the greatly praised author ofMachine DreamsandShelter, a major new novel. MotherKindis the story of Kate, whose care for her terminally ill mother coincides with the birth of her first child and the early months of a young marriage. She must, in a single year, come to terms with radiant beginnings and profound loss.MotherKindis a delicately layered narrative in which the details of daily life resonate with import and meaning. We enter Kate's present world of first and second families, babies and lively stepchildren, neighbors and friends, baby-sitters and wise strangers. Images of her not-so-long-ago past intermingle in a turning of the seasons marked by the gradual fading of her mother, the strong woman who has been her friend, her guiding star and her counterpart across a divide of experience and years. MotherKindimmerses us in a very contemporary situation, yet deals with timeless themes. Even as Kate's relationship with her mother embodies her childhood and adolescence in another place, she must decide what "home" is, and how to translate all she has come from into what she will carry forward. As her baby grows and her mother becomes increasingly ill, Kate realizes how inextricably linked we are, even in separation -- across generations, cultures, time; across death itself. It is the triumph ofMotherKindthat Kate's complex experience of being -- and losing -- a mother is so deeply and luminously portrayed.

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Review: MotherKind

User Review  - Phyllis - Goodreads

A heartfelt novel of the adjustments made in blending a family, childbirth, and facing loss. Read full review

Review: MotherKind

User Review  - Laura - Goodreads

Perhaps should not have read this as I still mourned my own mother . . . but it was a lovely look at the mother-daughter relationship. Read full review


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About the author (2000)

Jayne Anne Phillips is the author of two novels, Shelter (1994) and Machine Dreams (1984), and two collections of widely anthologized stories, Fast Lanes (1987) and Black Tickets (1979). She is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, two National Endowment for the Arts fellowships and a Bunting Fellowship. She has been awarded the Sue Kaufman Prize for First Fiction (1980) and an Academy Award in Literature (1997) by the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Her work has appeared most recently in Granta, DoubleTake and The Norton Anthology of Contemporary Fiction. She is currently Writer in Residence at Brandeis University.

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