A review by thebakerbookworm
The Mothers, by Brit Bennett

emotional reflective sad slow-paced
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes


This book, as the title suggest, is about mothers. There isn't a ton of time given to exploring the other relationships, which I didn't really realize was happening until the end. There are plenty of other relationship dynamics, but the complexities within them are barely touched on, almost glossed over even.

At the end, I found myself wanting more from those other relationships, but I appreciate what the author was doing in focusing only on the mothers, mainly because she does it so well. She's an excellent writer, and her words drew me in again and again as she explored how much motherhood affects these characters' lives. There are absent mothers, both by death and by physical location, there are overbearing mothers, there are nosy mothers, there is the desire to be a mother, there is the decision to be a mother or not. I liked that the book wasn't trying to make a statement about motherhood, one way or the other. It's up to the reader to draw your own conclusions.

I didn't enjoy this one quite as much as I loved The Vanishing Half, but I'll also be thinking about these characters and their choices for a while. I read this for my book club, and we had a great discussion about it.

I'm looking forward to whatever Brit Bennett writes next!

Read if you like: small towns, character-driven stories, Greek chorus. 

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