Mother, Mother


Josephine Hurst has her family under control. With two beautiful daughters, a brilliantly intelligent son, a tech-guru of a husband, and a historical landmark home, her life is picture perfect. But living in this matriarch’s determinedly cheerful, yet subtly controlling domain hasn’t been easy for her family, and when her oldest daughter, Rose, runs off with a mysterious boyfriend, Josephine tightens her grip, gradually turning her flawless home into a darker sort of prison.

Resentful of her sister’s newfound freedom, Violet turns to eastern philosophy, hallucinogenic drugs, and extreme fasting, eventually landing herself in a psych ward. Meanwhile, her brother, Will, recently diagnosed with Asperger’s, shrinks further into a world of self-doubt. Their father, Douglas, finds resolve in the bottom of a bottle—an addict craving his own chance to escape. Josephine struggles to maintain the family’s impeccable façade, but when a violent incident leads to a visit from child protective services, the truth about the Hursts might finally be revealed.

The Phoenix’s Perspective

Amazing doesn’t even cover how I would describe this book.  I was drawn to Mother, Mother by a combination of the cover and the overview.  It just screamed interesting.  I can say that it did not disappoint!

We are given a look into the life of the Hurst family through the eyes of William (the youngest who is still attached to mom) and Violet (the rebellious middle child).  Will’s narrative is always “logical” and candid, but is also incredibly tainted due to the influence of his mother.  While Violet’s narrative seems fresh and intuitive, but at the same time it is also cloudy.  To be honest, it almost felt like reading two different books at the same time.  Yet, I guess that would be how the children felt about their mother considering the dual faces she gave them.

Each child attempts to crack the case of their missing sibling for a different reason – Will hopes to earn more of his mother’s love and Violet hopes to prove that her mother isn’t perfect and is hiding something.  The ending is amazing in the most disorienting and disturbing way, but I wouldn’t have traded reading this book for anything.

Would I add it to the library?

Yes.  Definitely!


Genre: Fiction
ISBN: 9780385347259
Rating:  absolutely awesome

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