Saturday, September 19, 2015

The Year My Mother Came Back: A Memoir by Alice Eve Cohen

For the first time in decades I’m remembering Mom, all of her--the wonderful and terrible things about her that I’ve cast out of my thoughts for so long. I’m still struggling to prevent these memories from erupting from their subterranean depths. Trying to hold back the flood. I can’t, not today. The levees break.

Thirty years after her death, Alice Eve Cohen’s mother appears to her, seemingly in the flesh, and continues to do so during the hardest year Alice has had to face: the year her youngest daughter needs a harrowing surgery, her eldest daughter decides to reunite with her birth mother, and Alice herself receives a daunting diagnosis. As it turns out, it’s entirely possible for the people we’ve lost to come back to us when we need them the most.

Although letting her mother back into her life is not an easy thing, Alice approaches it with humor, intelligence, and honesty. What she learns is that she must revisit her childhood and allow herself to be a daughter once more in order to take care of her own girls. Understanding and forgiving her mother’s parenting transgressions leads her to accept her own and to realize that she doesn’t have to be perfect to be a good mother.



Alice Eve Cohen caught my attention in the beginning of the book. I really liked the memoir she wrote and the title really got me to read more. It was very entertaining to see where the book would go and I'm glad I kept reading. For me I was hooked by the couple of pages. Can I just add how small and convenient this book was for me to take with me anywhere in my purse. For me I believed everything that Alice wrote and I felt a connection to her stories. I believe that the deceased is never dead and they can come back by signs we have in life. This book was very realistic in my eyes and it didn't feel fake or unrelatable that even if I didn't go threw the same thing as her I could feel a little of what she fe2lt and how she dealt with that in the period of time. Alice's writing style was just an awe to read. It came together so beautifully that I had to stop and breathe and really get back into it. After reading this book I was motivated enough to reread the books which made my TBR slow down but I didn't mind. I stayed up nights after another just to finish again and remember why I fell in love with this book. 


Alice Eve Cohen is a writer and solo theatre artist. Her new memoir, THE YEAR MY MOTHER CAME BACK, is published by Algonquin Books, March 31, 2015. Winner of Elle's Magazine Grand Prize for Nonfiction, Oprah Magazine’s 25 Best Books of Summer, and Salon's Best Books of the Year for her memoir, "What I Thought I Knew" (Penguin). She has written for Nickelodeon, CTW, and CBS, and has toured her solo shows nationally and internationally. Alice has received fellowships and grants from the NYS Council on the Arts and the NEA. She graduated from Princeton University and got her MFA from The New School. Alice teaches at The New School and lives with her family in New York City. She is currently working on a novel.



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