Claire, a composer and a new mother, comes to L.A. so her husband can follow his dream of writing TV comedy. With Paul working all hours and Claire left with a baby, William, whom she adores but has no idea how to care for, they hire Lola - a 52-year-old mother of five who works in America to pay for her own children's education back in the Philippines. Lola stabilizes the rocky household, and other parents try to lure her away. What she sacrifices to stay with Claire and William remains her own secret.
"Funny, smart, and filled with razor sharp observations about life and parenthood, Simpson’s latest is well worth the wait.” (Publishers Weekly)
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A Story of Have and Have Nots
I didn't read the print version, but I did enjoy the audio version. The narrator does a very good job of giving each character a recognizable voice, making the dialog easy to follow, the internal discussion easy to recognize. This is definitely the type of book that lends itself to a well done audio production.
I would recommend this book to someone who enjoys a glimpse into others lives and getting a chance to see others point of view, but at times it was a bit like watching a reality TV show. If you want an easy listen with great narration, then this is a good choice.
I loved the scene where Lola travels with Claire to the performance in NY and sneaks out to buy the baby formula. It gave me reassurance that my neuroticism with my first born child wasn't all the different from others like me and it gave time to pause and give thanks for the women who helped me when I was working full time and raising small children, bringing me courage and comfort and expertise and confidence to one of the scariest roles I'll ever fill.
I know it seems cliche, but I would like to take Lola out and its because she is the most down to earth of them all; after raising her own children, she continues to sacrifice for them in ways we as American mothers can't imagine. Her move from being near the top of the social order in the Phillipines to near the bottom in America and her humility and grace are worthy of recognition and exploration.
The book rang true in many ways to my life in Los Angeles, but I will say that the Preschool Director is not given a fair representation. My child went to the best preschool in the greater LA basin, there in Santa Monica, and our Director was a wonderful asset and resource. My children are long past preschool age and I am still grateful to her for the environment she gave to my child.
- J. McGee
- Pamela Harvey