Elevate Difference

Reviews tagged mother daughter

Arcadia Falls

Meg Rosenthal needs a fresh start after the death of her husband. She gave up her career as an artist when her daughter Sally was born, but when she is left with virtually nothing except for a barely functional car, she finds a job teaching folklore and English at a small boarding school for young artists in upstate New York. Sally, now a teenager and a promising artist herself, is admitted to the Arcadia School where her mother will work.

Unruly Girls, Unrepentant Mothers: Redefining Feminism on Screen

Unruly Girls, Unrepentant Mothers: Redefining Feminism on Screen by Kathleen Rowe Karlyn is a fascinating look into the movies and television I watched as a kid. As a woman in my mid-twenties, I can safely say that my age group, for the most part, was the target audience when the films and television shows mentioned in the book were being produced. Or, at least, one of the target audiences.

Dreaming in French

On the surface, Dreaming in French sounds like the type of book I would love. It’s about a strong-willed girl named Charlotte growing up in Paris during the 1970s until she and her mother are forced to move to New York. I love anything about Paris, especially during the 1970s with its yé-yé girl singers that ruled the charts, inventive fashion, and sexual freedom.

Old Photographs

Old Photographs by Sherie Posesorski is the story of Phoebe Hecht, a teenage girl who is struggling through most boring summer of her life. Originally from the small town of Barrie, Phoebe moved to Toronto about a year ago when her mother married Greg, a very rich, very serious doctor. While her mother is excited about all the changes in their life, Phoebe is less than thrilled.

Love Like Hate

Having left the history of the Vietnam War in the classrooms of my London secondary school six years ago, I delighted in reading the new novel by Vietnamese American author Linh Dinh. Predominantly set in post-war Vietnam, Love Like Hate weaves fact with fiction, giving an historical background to character development.

Sometimes Mine

Genie Toledo, the best cardiologist in Ohio, is in the midst of an eleven-year passionate love affair with Mike Crabbe, a married basketball coach residing in another state. Their love affair has survived the initial hiccups of insecurity, jealousy, and possessiveness. After a decade of physical and emotional closeness they have settled into this arrangement, perfectly understanding and respecting each others boundaries, and traveling to meet each other every Thursday. A series of events, including Mike’s diagnosis of prostrate cancer place Genie in the middle of Mike’s family affairs.

Starting from Scratch: A Novel with Recipes

In Starting from Scratch, Olivia Tschetter successfully defended her doctoral dissertation and lost her mother all in one day. The youngest of four siblings, Olivia moves back home to be with her father, to run away from her responsibilities at school, and to grieve. Her connection to her mother, who was an incredible cook, is food.

The Things We Carry

The Things We Carry tells the story of two sisters coping with the death of their drug-addicted mother Sunny (Alexis Rhee). After leaving her mother and sister Eve (Catherine Kresge) to travel the globe, Emmie (Alyssa Lobit) returns home upon news of her mother’s death.

Bitch is the New Black

I don’t believe bitch is the new Black any more than I believe that thirty is the new twenty. As our most recent racial shenanigans have reminded us, Black is still its same ol’ Black self. And anybody who engages in the same shamtastic behaviors at thirty as she did at twenty is just plain trifling.

Letter to My Daughter

I admit that I am influenced by book titles in my choice of books to read. In that sense, Letter to My Daughter was somewhat off putting for me. I was expecting a somewhat predictable story of a mother writing a letter to her daughter.

Daughters of Empire: A Memoir of a Year in Britain and Beyond

The poet and essayist Jane Satterfield writes a hauntingly discontinuous prose-poem about a sort of exile.


The latest novel from Canadian author Betty Jane Hegerat, Delivery is a story about the bonds that attach mother, daughter, and granddaughter. It’s about the stark choices that women have to make when facing an unanticipated pregnancy and an abrupt mid-life transition.

The Last River Child

The Last River Child is the story of a town caught up in a legend: they believe there are children possessed by the spirit of the river meant to bring misfortune to everything around them. Everyone is taught to stay away from the river, but a young girl named Peg feels drawn to the river and refuses to believe the story.

An Endless Winter’s Night: An Anthology of Mother-Daughter Stories

When it comes to works of literature, one key element that can make or break the brilliance of the creation is translation. Indian literature, specifically, has a history of poor translations. This has led some writers (Salman Rushdie, for example) to write nearly exclusively in English in order for the essence of one’s work to reach a broader audience.

Traveling With Pomegranates: A Mother-Daughter Story

Traveling With Pomegranates tells the two parallel stories of its authors, a mother and daughter. The two women learn about themselves while abroad in Greece and France, as well as in their respective homes in South Carolina. Ann comes to terms with her disappointment in receiving a rejection letter from the only affordable school offering a Master's degree in Greek history.

Tell Me Something True

Tell Me Something True is about a young woman, Gabriella, who spends a summer visiting family in Colombia and what she learns about her mother, Helena, upon discovering her diary. Helena died when Gabriella was only a baby, so the image Gabriella has of her mother is broken when she is confronted by the secrets her mother kept.

Anna In-Between

The premise of Anna In-Between is simple: Anna Sinclair, a thirty-nine-year-old editor at a big book publishing company in New York City returns to the (unnamed) Caribbean nation where she was born and raised in order to visit her parents, Beatrice and John Sinclair. While there, she learns her mother has advanced breast cancer, but refuses to go to the United States, which has better hospitals and equipment, for the operation that could save her life.

The Madonnas Of President Street

There are several formulas in life for crazy-making: having all of the responsibility, but none of the power; placing one’s fate in others’ untrustworthy hands, reacting instead of acting. These states may sound especially familiar to women raised in the 1950s, ‘60s, and ‘70s.

Home Free

Books with young female characters who love books make my heart smile. Home Free by Sharon Jennings made my heart shine with a full-faced grin. Meet Leanna Mets. She loves books, aspires to be a writer, and is trying to figure out what life means. This alone is no easy task, but it’s especially hard as she’s trying to navigate her blossoming life under the strict and watchful eye of her conservative mother. Leanna just wants to feel free.

The Artist's Mother: A Tribute by History's Greatest Artists to the Women Who Created Them

The artists featured in The Artist's Mother share three confounding commonalities. First, they paint; second, they have mothers; and third, they have painted their mother’s portraits. (Hope you’re still with me.) Apparently, this last trait was the key criterion for inclusion in this nifty thirty-six artist collection.

You'd Be So Pretty If...: Teaching Our Daughters to Love Their Bodies—Even When We Don't Love Our Own

In presenting the best ways to work with our daughters regarding self-image, author Dara Chadwick offers relatively comprehensive ideas pertaining to the aspects of maturing for girls into women.

Picking Bones from Ash

Marie Mutsuki Mockett’s debut novel, Picking Bones from Ash, drew me in from the first sentence. Satomi, one of the two main characters of the book, learns from her mother at a young age that in order to be safe in this world, a woman must be talented—not well educated and certainly not beautiful, a woman must be talented.

Mothers & Daughters

Carl Bessai’s film Mothers & Daughters weaves a very textile-esque narrative containing a talented ensemble cast who convincingly engage the complex relationship between parent and child. Babz Chula brilliantly plays Micki, a self-involved romance novelist who all too easily forgets her daughter Rebecca’s needs. Rebecca, played by Camille Sullivan, possesses a rather brooding soul. Counter to this is the palpably awkward relationship between housewife Brenda (Gabrielle Rose) and her exceedingly stoic daughter Kate (Tiffany Lyndall-Knight).

Alice Fantastic

“I read faster than I breathe,” panted Maggie Estep. The author furiously delivered her signature sassy staccato while reading recently from her sixth novel, Alice Fantastic, at Inquiring Minds independent bookstore in Saugerties, New York. Estep quickly seduced the audience with her sharp tongue, much the way she first seduced me with her spoken word at the Nuyorican Poets Café in the 1990s.

Fed Up

Given the strained and perilous relationship I have with my own mother, I have a lot of admiration for any mother-daughter pair that get along well enough to successfully negotiate the writing of a novel. That said, Fed Up could have been a lot better than it was. I give the authors points for creating a strong and opinionated female character, Chloe, who solves the mystery of a poisoned woman on her own through a rough mixture of luck and logic.

Through the Storm: A Real Story of Fame and Family in a Tabloid World

When the news first hit that Lynne Spears, mother of Britney & Jamie Lynn Spears, was planning on writing a book, everyone seemed to have an opinion. Rumor had it that she was writing a book of parenting advice. Everyone scoffed. Parenting advice from a woman with a pregnant 16-year-old and a pop star whose fall from grace was playing out in the tabloids day by day? Yeah, right. Given the media storm going on around her daughters at that time of the books planned publishing date (remember Britney's hospitalizations? The vagina-flashing?


Ursula K. Le Guin is the author of short stories, essays, volumes of poetry, books for children, and many novels. She has won the National Book Award, five Hugo and Nebula Awards, a Pushcart Prize, and the Howard Vursell Award of American Academy of Arts and Letters.

The Films of Su Friedrich, Vol. 1: The Ties That Bind

When I read what The Ties That Bind was about, I knew I had to see it. Su Friedrich interviews her mother, Lore, about what it was like living in Germany during World War II. It is a brilliantly woven film tapestry - a mixture of story-telling, historical film footage, current newspaper articles/titles, current war protests and dozens of modern “political mailings.” I recommend it to everyone.

Fierce Attachments: A Memoir

Few books are so gripping that they change your perception of the world around you. Even fewer books make you see your intimate relationships in a whole new light. Because of its bold, honest insights about mothers, daughters and the growing up/growing away process, _Fierce Attachments _made me re-examine my relationship with my own mother.