Friday, July 12, 2013

Mother Daughter Me

Katie Hafner's memoir Mother Daughter Me just reaffirms my love of the memoir genre. Hafner's writing is superb, no doubt because she is a journalist by trade.  Within the pages of this memoir Hafner was able to make me feel as though I was an old friend, sharing intimate thoughts and feelings about the time her mother spent living with her and her daughter in San Francisco.

Hafner's living arrangement is not typical, and it is more unique because she had not lived with her mother since she was ten years old, having been removed from her mother's custody. Now decades later, the two are under one roof, trying to create new and happy memories.

In order for us to understand the entire story, Hafner shares memories of her childhood, both sad and happy.  She and her mother undergo counseling to deal with the past.  Hafner also discloses her thoughts and feelings about her marriage to her daughter, Zoe's father, who passed away suddenly, and her new friend, Bob.  

Her role as a mother is also not to be forgotten. Parenting Zoe is one of the prime focuses of Mother Daughter Me, as Zoe in her teen years, is forced to get used to her grandmother's arrival, despite never having been close to her. Hafner, part of the "sandwich generation" is noticeably caught in the middle.

This is an honest memoir with Hafner's feelings and inner thoughts laid bare before the reader. The family dynamics can be appreciated by everyone, and Hafner's willingness to share her experience openly  made it nearly impossible for me to put this memoir down.  

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