One Life: My Mother’s Story by Kate Grenville

So how to describe this book without devolving into a slew of Personal Issues that had me sobbing so hard at points in the book that I had to set it aside and just cry from the relief of knowing that someone, somewhere, experienced the same pain and came out intact and even, dare I say it, happy?

Anyway, terrific biography of an astounding woman. The value placed on the maternal instinct and how it matters just as much to a woman’s sense of self and personal fulfillment as outside work, and on crafting the best life possible even when circumstances work against you, and of the role of literature and art in giving life meaning, really resounded in me, as did the value of childcare that was loving and nurturing without being prohibitively expensive. When I first received this book as a gift from darling B, I didn’t know what it had to do with me that she thought I needed to read it so urgently: it’s nice to know that she still understands me through time and distance. Gorgeously written, One Life is a fitting tribute to someone who loved and was loved, fully and thoughtfully.

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