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The Mothers #2020

The Mothers That s what life is about at the bottom of things she thought women keeping babies In while the world is at war Alma and her children are living in a sleep out at the back of Mrs Lovett s hou

  • Title: The Mothers
  • Author: Rod Jones
  • ISBN: 9781922147226
  • Page: 271
  • Format: Paperback
  • The Mothers By Rod Jones, That s what life is about, at the bottom of things, she thought women keeping babies.In 1917, while the world is at war, Alma and her children are living in a sleep out at the back of Mrs Lovett s house in working class Footscray When Alma falls pregnant, her daughter Molly is born in secret As Molly grows up, there is a man who sometimes follows her on her way to schooThat s what life is about, at the bottom of things, she thought women keeping babies.In 1917, while the world is at war, Alma and her children are living in a sleep out at the back of Mrs Lovett s house in working class Footscray When Alma falls pregnant, her daughter Molly is born in secret As Molly grows up, there is a man who sometimes follows her on her way to school.Anna meets Neil in 1952 at her parents shack at Cockatoo She later enters a Salvation Army home for unmarried mothers, but is determined to keep her baby.Fitzroy, 1975 Student life Things are different now, aren t they Cathy and David are living together, determined not to get married Against the background of the tumultuous events of the sacking of the Whitlam government, a new chapter is added to the family s story.The Mothers is a book about secrets It interweaves the intimate lives of three generations of Australian women who learn that it s the stories we can t tell that continue to shape us and make us who we are.

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      Rod Jones

    1 thought on “The Mothers

    1. 3.5 Times change and attitudes change, but women and girls have shared similar hopes and fears for generations This book covers the plight of unwed mothers in and around Melbourne from WW1 to today, when we now refer to single rather than unwed Each story mentions the possibility of pregnancy termination, but it s not an area that s explored.1917 We meet Alma first, leaving her philandering husband She packs up her two kids and meets a friendly young man in the park who takes them all home to hi [...]

    2. An entire spectrum of sentiments and feelings can be associated with the word mother One s attempts at defining the term is strongly linked to one s personal experiences, whether they be positive or negative However by selecting the title, The Mothers, I would think that many readers would initially assume that the novel would describe a favorable position of motherhood a kind of homage and celebration of a mother s strength and fortitude in supporting her children s wellbeing and welfare agains [...]

    3. Rod Jones new novel The Mothers is such a different book to Julia Paradise see my review it s hard to believe it s by the same author At one level, it s a family epic which begins with the travails of a single mother in the early 20th century, but on another level it s a social history that interrogates motherhood and mothering in a way that I haven t come across before not least because it s written with great sensitivity by a male author whose own life experience bleeds into the book.As I mull [...]

    4. During my undergraduate studies, I did an urban history town planning subject Part of our assessment involved choosing a street in an inner city suburb of Melbourne and, using historical maps, records and census data, we had to research how the social fabric of the street had changed over time.The Mothers felt a like I was reading an urban history project A very well researched urban history project There was a lot of information in this book On the corner of George Street there was a milk bar r [...]

    5. Rod Jones has crafted an intimate novel charting three generations of women in this personal tale of secrets, motherhood and the untold stories that shape us see his interview in theAge Quietly moving If you like Colm To b n s work, I m sure you will love this book The Mothers is a terrific achievement for Jones Readings

    6. Quite good, but a little disjointed at the end Almost as if author had run out of steam I felt that the coverage of the character Anna s time in the unmarried mother s home was both honest and confronting A salutory reminder of times when single motherhood was such a stigma and life was hard for so very many families.

    7. 3.5 stars When I first commenced reading this book, I thought it was an engaging enough story but pretty ordinary However as I continued reading I became invested I liked the simple writing style and when description was used it was done well I liked the way Jones simply told the story without interpreting the behavior of the protagonists I liked the way he conveyed different experiences of motherhood in different times of history I also like the fact that it was largely set in the inner west o [...]

    8. After hearing Rod Jones speak at the Batemans Bay Writers Festival I was keen to read The Mothers.The life connection between the Mothers was quite poignant and the weaving of the story kept interest right throughout It was difficult to put down the book.From a writing perspective I particularly liked the skillful change from 3rd person narrative to dialogue Memoir as fiction

    9. The Mothers tells the stories of three generations of women in Footscray, a working class suburb of Melbourne Each of them struggle to survive hard times Each is vulnerable yet strong they all make mistakes and yet try to be good mothers.The first narrative strand is set during the last years of the First World War Alma has left her husband but has nowhere to go She and her children find refuge with a kind hearted woman, and Alma finds comfort in the arms of her benefactor s son However, when Al [...]

    10. This review was originally posted on 125pages The Mothers was a unique look at three generations of women all with a big similarity at the heart of them While strong, these women struggled to overcome the situations life threw at them Spanning from the early 1900 s to modern times, it showed how far reaching one person s decisions can go.The plot for The Mothers was great Very intricate and with so many winding storylines that somehow all tied together The writing of Rod Jones was fine, however [...]

    11. Rod Jones The Mothers is set in Australia over the course of several generations It begins with Alma, who gets pregnant young and rushes into marriage with a man she barely knows By the time their second child is a toddler, the couple is estranged, and when her husband brings home his paramour, Alma flees She has nowhere to go, but is taken in by a young man about her age and his mother, who he still lives with The two eventually conceive a child of their own, but he doesn t want to marry her an [...]

    12. This autobiographical novel is on the one hand a family saga and on the other a story of Melbourne, covering nearly three quarters of the 20th century and three generations of mothers Set against a backdrop of changing times from 1917 to the 1990s we follow the loosely connected lives of an extended family as the women in particular endure loss, hardship and the damage caused by prejudice and family secrets It s a rich panorama of Australian life, a social history told through the lives of ordin [...]

    13. This riveting multi generational family saga opens in Melbourne, Australia, and follows three generations of women through the hardships, stigma, and rejection of single motherhood from WWI through the early 1970s Gripping from beginning to end, The Mothers was almost impossible to put down Author Rod Jones style is reminiscent of a Jane Smiley novel, as he perceptively and seamlessly intertwines the complexities of social conventions and economics in the early to mid 1900s with equally interest [...]

    14. This book is difficult to both rate and review I did not necessarily enjoy the story, although the amount of research that went into this book is pretty outstanding I felt like this was an assigned read for a Social Studies course or maybe Modern Day Feminist class The stories were a combination of fascinating and clinical Some better than others This book covers the harrow, hardships and trauma of unwed mothers in and around Melbourne from WWI to present day I think readers who prefer non ficti [...]

    15. I found this book slow going at first While I found Alma s story interesting, it was a bit pedestrian at times And I never really got one poor family taking in another But the passages of Anna at the Haven were very moving I found it very indicative of the times and probably still is to large degree the way women who enjoyed sex or desire were treated Alma Anna It was also interesting that the fear of both Kim David s birth mother and adoptive mother appeared to be two sides of the same coin I w [...]

    16. Loved this book, both a series of related tales about mothers and their children and a social history of Australia and what it meant to be unmarried with children in previous era s.The inter related stories are well told, nothing dramatic, but stories you want to know the outcome of, in particular Anna s story at the Salvation Army home Based mainly in Melbourne, all of the suburbs and locations were familiar to me, and reading about how they were in past era s was very interesting, and complime [...]

    17. I enjoyed this novel the intertwined stories of Australian women their children over a few generations I was surprised at how much I enjoyed it as I don t think the story, characters or writing were particularly original I also enjoyed the novelty of a male author writing female narrators, which I thought Jones did succeed at The local Melbourne western subs references really brought the stories to life.

    18. The story of three generations of women each facing the challenges of motherhood this novel tracks Australia s changing attitudes to unmarried mothers and the sadness and joy of adoption The women s stories are moving and the research of the various historical periods 1930s, 1950s and 1970s is excellent However, sometimes the research overwhelmed the story line which led to a distancing from the impact of the emotions of the main characters.

    19. Looking back, this is a fairly decent tale of multi generation women, mostly in one family.It is a story about women, the men being very much on the sidelinesere s love, abandonment, marriage, adoption etc etc in thereAll makes for a good family drama.Unfortunately, I sometimes felt it was just a block of sentences, with no emotions attached So it wasn t always a great read But a good story.

    20. I probably would have given this 3.5 stars but there are no halves on GR A good evocation of the times and changing values for unwed mothers I enjoyed the ride but at times felt as though Rod Jones research overwhelmed the characters and was a bit too evident Having said that I think he got into the skin of the women and they were all believe characters David was very unlikeable and I wondered how his wife had managed to stick by him over 15 years Overall an enjoyable read

    21. The story follows a series of mothers in one family in Melbourne throughout the generations from the early 1900s to present day Each generation is explored in separate parts and illuminate various issues that mothers in that generation had to deal with especially in regard to keeping and looking after the children they had An enjoyable read and historically and socially accurate.

    22. I enjoyed this Distinctly Australian, the story is told through the eyes of four different women from three generations living during iconic periods of our history WWI the Depression, the fifties the seventies All face the different social challenges that were commonplace for women of their time Interwoven throughout their lives are secrets secrets that connect them all.

    23. I found The Mothers lacking for my taste in reading Although I can imagine that there will be readers coming through that would enjoy a historical fiction like this one, I just felt that the story needed .

    24. This was so boring Was going to quit half way through then it pepped up for a chapter or two before reverting to boring It was just following a few women through their lives The earlier stuff set in Melb was interesting for historical info but was of a dialogue than a novel Yawn.

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