Dear Great Book Guru, With Memorial Day quickly coming upon us, I am making my plans. At 8am Monday we will be hosting a breakfast on the front lawn of the Children’s Library after which we will march in the Village’s iconic parade - again organized by Phil Como. Following the beautiful, bittersweet ceremony at Clifton Park, we will head down to Sea Cliff Beach for lunch. Any suggestions for a good book to bring along? Memorial Day Observer
Dear Memorial Day Observer, Sounds like you have a fine plan and I have an interesting, thought-provoking book to complete your weekend: THE PERFECT MOTHER by Aimee Molloy. This psychological thriller can be read on two levels. The obvious one is that of a crime novel- a child is kidnapped and there are many colorful suspects and leads. The other is a disturbing social commentary: our harsh judgment of women- and mothers in particular. The May Mothers is a group of Brooklyn women whose babies were born in May and have met up through an online parenting group. They gather weekly at Prospect Park with their children to share, advise and- yes- judge. The women decide to meet at a popular local bar for a night out without children or husbands. During the evening, one of the babies is kidnapped and for the next thirteen days, we follow the stories of four of these women as the media, their families, and their peers turn on them for what are perceived as failings. While the resolution is farfetched, the story of societal demands on mothers is right on. Highly recommended!