Holy shiz on a stick, seven shopping days until Christmas and you still don't have anything for your dear mamma? Thankfully, popping out to your local indie bookstore (or chain bookstore, in a pinch) is easy-peasy and these one-size-fits-all suggestions should make any mom content (suggestions for dad to follow next week):
- Perfection(Julie Metz): If your mom likes to read memoirs, this true account of one woman's search for happiness after the death of her husband (and subsequent discovery of his many affairs) is a good bet. The New York Times said, "She brings refreshing candor to a startling, painful tale."
- Shanghai Girls(Lisa See): Two women living in 1937 China find out their father is selling them as wives to American men to pay off his debts. As they make their journey they must deal with their complex relationship as well as a crucial secret they hold. Novels about relationships between sisters=mom lit. Someone needs to bring this theme back.
- The Help(Kathryn Stockett): This one was a biggie on the NYT list this year AND my mom personally loved it. Now that's a recommendation for you. It's 1962 and Skeeter has just returned to her home in Mississippi after completing her schooling. Aibileen and Minny work in Skeeter's family's household. Though their lives are divided by class and prejudice, their lives are woven together. Southern lit is hot, yo.
- Dreaming in Hindi(Kathryn Russell Rich): Another memoir. Rich, a freelance writer who survived a serious illness, accepted an assignment to travel to India and fell in love with the country. She recounts her determination to learn the language and what it taught her about the culture, weaving in facts gleaned from interviews with linguists on what occurs in the brain when we learn a new language.
- The Wife's Tale(Lori Lansens): Canadian Lori Lansens is known for her empathetic and humourous portrayals of ordinary women. She's overlooked, just as Lisa Moore is, for being too 'emotional' but her books seem to resonate with women (I personally haven't read anything by her yet) and hopefully your mom will agree. She better! Seriously, you're supporting the arts by buying her this. And also, you've bought her a sweater for the past three Christmases.