The Mistress's Daughter : A Memoir Paperback
by A. M. Homes
On the day that Homes was born in 1961, she was given up for adoption.
Her birth parents were a twenty-two year old woman and an older married man with whom she was having an affair.
Thirty years later, out of the blue, Homes was contacted by a lawyer on behalf of her birth mother, and they began to correspond; her biological father contacted her soon after.
These two individuals and their effect on the adult Homes are strange and unexpected, and the story spirals into something utterly raw and hilarious, heartbreaking and absurd.
Along the way, Homes describes the clash between her childhood fantasies of her birth parents and the disappointing reality.
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 238 pages, ports.
- Publisher: Granta Books
- Publication Date: 02/06/2008
- Category: Autobiography: literary
- ISBN: 9781847080110
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Review by LynCollett
A fantastically powerful insight into Homes' experiences of adoption and the sudden reappearance and contradictory demands, expectations and attitudes of her biological parents in her adult life. I was struck by her ability to convey the conflicting emotions of her situation. The story's twists and turns leave you slack-jawed for much of the book. It is a moving account of the ability of human beings to inflict great pain upon each other, frequently without any apparent thought or realisation. To say I "enjoyed" the book feels wrong - it implies a kind of ghoulish pleasure in the difficulties faced by others. However, I did find it a compelling and moving read which I would strongly recommend.