With this in mind I jumped at the chance to review Mom: A celebration of Mothers from StoryCorps edited by Dave Isay. Maybe you have heard of StoryCorps before as they are featured on NPR's Morning Edition.
StoryCorps is an independent nonprofit whose mission is to provide Americans of all backgrounds and beliefs with the opportunity to record, share, and preserve the stories of our lives. Since 2003, StoryCorps has collected and archived more than 30,000 interviews from more than 60,000 participants. Each conversation is recorded on a free CD to share, and is preserved at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress.
We do this to remind one another of our shared humanity, strengthen and build the connections between people, teach the value of listening, and weave into the fabric of our culture the understanding that every life matters. At the same time, we will create an invaluable archive of American voices and wisdom for future generations.Pretty cool huh? So I was very curious about a book on Moms pulled from these 30,000 interviews. The book jacket highlighted why this felt like such an interesting topic to me. Here is what it says about the book:
Through conversations between parents and children, husbands and wives, siblings and friends, the life of the American mother unfolds. In stories that take us from the woods of New Hampshire to urban Detroit and beyond, we meet mothers and children from all walks of life-an immigrant mother instilling in her children the importance of education, adult children caring for an elderly parent, a woman remembering the sound of her mother's laugh, and mothers and children of all ages learning to grow into new roles over time. Visiting families in moments of profound joy and sadness, courage and despair, struggle and triumph, we learn new truths about that most primal and sacred of bonds-the relationship between mother and child.And so I began to read. The vignettes in the stories are short so they are quickly read, but they are also quickly read for the stories they contain. Within its pages are real people telling real stories of their mothers. There is sadness and grief, there is joy and laughter. In many ways it has the impact of the very best Chicken Soup books but without the feeling of being emotionally contrived. These are real stories of real moms and they touched me.
With this vital contribution to the American storybook, StoryCorps has created a tribute to mothers that honors the wealth of our national experience. An appreciation of the wisdom and generosity passed between mothers and children, this generation to the next, Mom offers powerful lessons in the meaning of family and the expansiveness of the human heart.
They were stories of overcoming obstacles, of adoption, of birth, of death. They were also very diverse stories ranging in ages, race, ethnic and religious upbringings, and even sexual orientation. They were living stories of moms and I cried more than once while reading these pages. But when I finished I was filled with a lightness that comes from knowing someone else's story, that and a desire to interview everyone I knew for StoryCorps in order to hear their own story.
Our stories hold us together - as a nation, as a family, as a people. And the stories of Mom speak to the very heart of who we are, as most often, our mother's are one of the biggest influences in our lives. I really enjoyed Mom: A celebration of Mothers from StoryCorps and was glad that I took part in this review from TLC Book Tours.
And best of all, if the book sounds interesting to you, you can win a free copy! Entering is easy.
1. Leave a comment telling me one story about your mother. Please include your email.
2. Open to US and Canada.