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Not Becoming My Mother
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
Bestselling author Ruth Reichl embarks on an investigation of her mother's life, piecing together the journey of a woman she comes to realise she never really knew. Reichl confronts the painful transition she made from a hopeful young woman to an increasingly unhappy older one and realises the tremendous sacrifices she made to make sure her daughter's life would not be as disappointing as her own. Growing up in Cleveland, Miriam Brudno dreamed of becoming a doctor, like her father. But when she announced this, her parents dissuaded her. Instead, Miriam opened a bookstore, a profession everyone agreed was suitably ladylike. Nearly 30 when she finally married, she fulfilled expectations, settled down, left her bookstore behind and started a family. But conformity came at a tremendous cost. With labour-saving devices to aid in household chores, there was simply not enough to fill the days. Miriam and most of her friends were smart, educated women who were often bored, miserable and silently rebellious. On what would have been Miriam's one hundredth birthday, Reichl opens up her mother's diaries for the first time and encounters a whole new woman.
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