A jacket blurb suggests that Deliver Me ought to be on the table beside the reading lamp, ready to pick up and enjoy piece by lovely piece. Surely that’s so. But I read it in one sitting, compelled by the powerful, authentic voices heard in the collection’s essays, poems and stories. The authors write with wit, warmth and wisdom about negotiating the tricky curves and blind corners of the bumpy mother-road.
We flinch (and, I admit, try not to laugh out loud) as a young woman’s expectation of childbirth as a warm soak, guided imagery and grateful acceptance of soul-enriching suffering collides with a somewhat different reality . We hear of the secondary benefits of culinary disaster, the delight of an unexpected suitor, the pulse-pounding, brain-shrieking terror of searching for a missing toddler, the sweet savor of a granddaughter’s fleeting closeness, the special circumstances of a stepmother’s love and loss, the precious textures, scents and wondrous words of tiny boys at bedtime. Guided by a young girl whose childhood takes an unexpected, wrenching turn, we journey back to a day when death meant a good supply of ice and the whiskey-fueled keening of an Irish wake.
We feel the guilt of wanting more, of resenting the loss of one’s self to the demands of family, while grasping for the “should” of gratitude and contentment.
Editor/author Diamond and her fellow contributors have produced a collection that enlightens and inspires, evoking tears, laughter and, most of all, the YES of recognition.
At this moment, I can’t think of a book I’d rather share.
— Carol Wallin
Such a variety of voices and perspectives on motherhood. The pieces are touching, hilarious, uplifting, or insightful…sometimes simultaneously. Taken together, the book illuminates bonds that we mothers all share.
— Melissa Lane
This collection of stories and poems is so beautiful. I read and re-read them all. They are fantastic. I’ve given copies to my friends for Mother’s Day!
— Julie Fajgenbaum
Deliver Me is a truly enjoyable read. Each short story and poem poignantly tells of the “real stuff” of parenting. This book strikes a chord with mothers of every age and circumstance and gives comfort to the reader that she’s not alone on the journey of parenthood. This book is brave, deep and profound. I laughed and cried, sometimes during the same short story or poem. Thanks to the talented and courageous authors and editor for such an excellent book.
— Meredith Soelberg
Once I opened the book, I couldn’t put it down!! The varied perspectives of motherhood moved me to laughter and tears. A good reminder to “live in the moment.”
— Nancy Kurtin
The essays and poems collected in this book come in small packages, yet one short piece can trigger the same a tidal wave of emotions as a two-hour movie. Three pages, that’s it. We see depictions of unbridled joy alongside angst and sadness, all set in poetry and prose that are at once beautiful and real. The subjects are real, the language is real. One author writes of her struggles to give birth while holding onto herself in her reincarnation as ‘mom.’ Others tell tales of children longing for mothers they’ve lost, through death and disconnect. We see how children grow up abruptly when life circumstances do not afford them the luxury of doing so in their own good time. We are lifted high up to celebrate toddlers in all their tender and whimsical ways, then taken down to sad, quiet places nobody likes to talk about. This book touches on several permutations of the mother/child relationship, at various stages, from different angles, crossing generational lines. It explores these dimensions without forcing conclusions, simply underscoring that we are human in our struggles, our shortcomings and our complexity. There are pieces in here so exquisite that you’ll want to share the book with every mother you know… and their sons and daughters too.
— Anonymous review BarnesandNoble.comThis lovely little surprise made me weep and laugh. As a mother and grandmother, I really related. Laura Diamond and the other talented writers keep themselves and their readers startlingly honest about how the hardest job in the world is accomplished!— Anonymous review BarnesandNoble.com