Top positive review
Not easy to sit with
26 April 2019
I think perhaps this books rating is not higher because the author / narrator is hard to, well, like. She presents a completely unfiltered tale. Beginning with a sorry tale of her failed relationships, which one can only think she included to make everyone realise we're all flawed and make bad decisions (so then perhaps we're less judgemental of the birth parents when they enter the scene?). Her attitude towards religion is boarderline offensive, describing herself as "jew-ish" z what now? She swears, she outlines her failings and what she saw as the failing of others with minimal compassion. I mean at one point she tells us she feverently prays that her daughter won't turn out like her birth mother, which may be a fleeting thought we all have about our children and various relative's traits they may inherit, but to read it cold in a book is abrasive. And yet I'm rating this a 4 because hard as it maybe to sit with Vanessa's writing this book is important to read. It tells as real, true as possible messy story and thats what makes us human. And balanced with all that hard stuff is the beauty and truth of a loving mother doing her best. More than her best. Who takes in people of the street; who speaks out against injustice, even when its hard; who picks up and keeps on going; who seeks out the back story, the story hard to hear and hard to tell.
Vanessa does not let us sit in our dichotomy of good and evil, "nice people" and "bad people", good decisions and wrong ones, but pulls us through the mess of real life.