In Some Assembly Required, Anne Lamott enters a new and unexpected chapter of her own life: grandmotherhood.
Stunned to learn that her son, Sam, is about to become a father at 19, Lamott begins a journal about the first year of her grandson, Jax's, life.
In careful and often hilarious detail, Lamott and Sam - about whom she first wrote so movingly in Operating Instructions - struggle to balance their changing roles with the demands of college and work, as they both forge new relationships with Jax's mother, who has her own ideas about how to raise a child. Lamott writes about the complex feelings that Jax fosters in her, recalling her own experiences with Sam when she was a single mother. Over the course of the year, the rhythms of life, death, family, and friends unfold in surprising and joyful ways.
By turns poignant and funny, honest and touching, Some Assembly Required is the true story of how the birth of a baby changes a family - as this book will change everyone who listens to it.
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Not her best work
I'm a huge Anne Lamott fan, loved
There just wasn't much to the story. Her son got a woman pregnant, they fought all the time, Anne loved the baby so much and worries all the time. And, she is so very involved in her church. And, she goes on vacation, which sounds like filler for the book. It would have been more interesting to have some short stories, each of which focused on one topic, like the trip to India, or the baby's birth, or her son becoming a father, allowing for more story development.
Sam was a pretty good narrator, but Anne was not. She simply sounded like she was reading from a text.
I did come to care about Amy, Sam, and Jax, and wished there had been an epilog to tell me what happened next. Did they stay together? I also found the words and advice of her spiritual leaders delightful to hear.
Anne speaks to moms, grandmothers, and dads alike.
- Janet M. McManus