A Life's Work: On Becoming a Mother

Front Cover
Macmillan, Mar 1, 2003 - Family & Relationships - 228 pages
1 Review

The experience of motherhood is an experience in contradiction. It is commonplace and it is impossible to imagine. It is prosaic and it is mysterious. It is at once banal, bizarre, compelling, tedious, comic, and catastrophic. To become a mother is to become the chief actor in a drama of human existence to which no one turns up. It is the process by which an ordinary life is transformed unseen into a story of strange and powerful passions, of love and servitude, of confinement and compassion.

In a book that is touching, hilarious, provocative, and profoundly insightful, novelist Rachel Cusk attempts to tell something of an old story set in a new era of sexual equality. Cusk's account of a year of modern motherhood becomes many stories: a farewell to freedom, sleep, and time; a lesson in humility and hard work; a journey to the roots of love; a meditation on madness and mortality; and most of all a sentimental education in babies, books, toddler groups, bad advice, crying, breastfeeding, and never being alone.

What people are saying - Write a review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - jayne_charles - LibraryThing

There are so many 'celebrity baby books' out there, none of which I would touch with a barge pole, with their soft-focus vomit-inducing coochie-coochie-coo. I don't even fancy those matey ones that ... Read full review

A LIFE'S WORK: On Becoming a Mother

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

A powerful, often funny account of pregnancy, childbirth, and mothering that doesn't gloss over the pain, mystery, and confusion—but does celebrates the wonder.Britisher Cusk (The Country Life, 1999 ... Read full review

Other editions - View all

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (2003)

Rachel Cusk is the author of the acclaimed novels The Country Life and Saving Agnes. She lives in England.

Bibliographic information