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A Mother's Gift Mass Market Paperback – April 8, 2003


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 10 and up
  • Grade Level: 5 and up
  • Mass Market Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Laurel Leaf (April 8, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0440237998
  • ISBN-13: 978-0440237990
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 4.2 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (99 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,162,059 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Pop fiction takes on a new meaning as teen singing sensation Spears and her mother, Lynne, produce a slight and treacly co-written rags-to-riches tale. Holly Faye Lovell lives with her mother, Wanda, in tiny Biscay, Miss. The 14-year-old enjoys life in the slow lane and entertains dreams of singing stardom. Though she performs in the church choir and at local events, Holly lacks the self-confidence (and opportunity) to develop her talent. All that changes when her loyal, car-mechanic boyfriend helps secure her an audition at the prestigious Haverty School of Music in Hattiesburg and she is offered a full scholarship. But at Haverty, Holly's provincial ways (and wardrobe, hand-stitched by her mom) make her a target for a bevy of wealthy snobs ("students whose parents had the big bucks to afford it. Holly and Wanda had little bucks"). The didactic melodrama unfolds in fast-paced, if sometimes jerky, prose, and a good share of it centers on Wanda (who keeps a diary). In the climax, the woman reveals a long-held secret to Holly, hinted at in the opening chapter. The Spearses convey credible feelings of teenage anxiety throughout, and Britney's fans will surely flock to this title (enticed by a jacket that highlights her name and suggests her likeness). But ultimately, they will be disappointed that the fictional Holly begs comparison with, but is far less memorable than, the real navel-baring singer. Ages 9-12.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

--This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From the Inside Flap

Holly Faye Lovell sure can sing. Everyone in Biscay, Mississippi, knows that. And when at fourteen she becomes the youngest student ever to win a scholarship to the prestigious Haverty School of Music, her dream of pursuing a singing career is on its way. But for the first time in her life, Holly must leave behind her mother, Wanda. Although they don?t have much in the way of money, there?s always been plenty of love . . . and there?s always been Wanda?s birthmark, an ugly red scar on the side of her face that makes people who don?t know her turn away. Now that Holly's off with her posh new friends and new life, she?s ashamed to find herself embarrassed by her mom and their humble background. And Wanda finds herself wanting to reveal a long-hidden secret . . . a secret that could destroy their bond forever.

A portion of the proceeds from this book will go to The Britney Spears Foundation.


From the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

Buy this book... I promise, you won't regret it!
Felicia
It's an amazing story, and I think Britney and Lynne did a great job of writing it.
StarGymnast
The ending was indeed a bit of a surprise but didn't really add much to the book.
Anna Barrfield

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Krystof Kunz on August 13, 2001
Format: Hardcover
... what really bothered me about "A Mother's Gift" was, that it bordered (in my mind) on vulgar propaganda. It seems, that it was designed to rehash the cliched "rags to riches" story (the real Britney by the way only has the latter part of this story in common with her literary counterpart) in order to offer young girls and boys a vision, an image, a possibility (however remote) of achieving stardom. While this visage itself may be helpful for young people, it had an exaggerated, self-caricaturing effect. Most importantly, however, it was designed to create an imaginary solidarity between Britney and her fans. By implicitly suggesting, that anyone can become a star, it lowers the star's pedestal and puts her (in the minds of her fans) into the category of "beloved" (however fabricated and untrue this may be), rather than "admirable". If "A Mother's Gift" had been a pamphlet instead of a novel, at least I could have respected the authors for not calling their creation "art" ...
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19 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Sammie L. Dickson on April 29, 2001
Format: Hardcover
This kind of book makes writers like me want to throw our pens away. Britney Spears and her mother are writing a book, see the cheese drip off the table. Why should we work feverishly on developing characters, twisting plots, creating twists, when she is taking the book deals? The publication companies have hit a new low, apparently they consider dancing in tight pants while lip synching equals writing talent. What's next, Justin Timberlake? Oh yes, he DOES have a book deal! Please do not buy this book, don't give Britt another million dollars to throw on the pile. They can't write songs, what makes you think they could write a novel?
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 27, 2001
Format: Hardcover
I honestly can say that I intended to buy this book for my mother this coming mother's day. I don't really care who the 'author' was, I just wanted a nice book to put in a basket with some other gifts. I bought it and read it first. Please. I am a sincere person, and I simply cannot believe that the publisher thinks this book is good quality. Without the name Britney Spears it would be sitting on the discount rack, if it was ever published at all. A silly story with no heart or guts. Painfully written, I hope that Brit and her mother either get out of the writing business or take a few high school writing courses.
Please, do not waste your money.
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15 of 19 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 11, 2001
Format: Hardcover
FUFF! When I started reading this book the cover was missing so I didn't even notice who the author was, so its not like I got to prejudge the book before I even read it. Anyways bottom line this is not something I would reccomend, i mean after I had finshed reading this book i couldn't figure out one thing that had happened. Man, this book is so scatterd they have things that should have happened in the end that are in the beginning, events that happened earlier in the book are changed around. To tell you the truth I don't even know why I bothered reading it, just the story line- A little girl who has big dreams of doing something big (or in this case going to a music school) Britney do you know how many books have been written so similar to this?? Come on be a little creative!! The only thing A Mothers Gift's got going for it is the name at the top other wise do you honestly think this would have gotten published?? There is one highlight to it though, if you want too check out Britney's writing skills(hehe) go ahead and buy it. Thats why I gave it 2 stars its more humorous than to be taken seriously.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Blue Jean Online on June 2, 2002
Format: Hardcover
...P>Here is the latest from Britney Spears, who apparently is an angel of a daughter and calls her mother every night. The girl next door whom we have all watched grow into a vixen has added a new title to her stardom: author. This new book, A Mother's Gift, was written by Britney and her mother, Lynn. Generally, when stars publish books they hire a ghost writer, so that was my initial impression. However, I assume someone with that much money could hire a better ghost writer, so if I were the judge I'd say the brown-haired (she's not naturally blond) babe did in fact write it with her mom.
Anyway, the story line. In a small town in Mississippi, everyone knows everyone else. And everyone knows Holly dreams of becoming a singer and has the voice to do it. Holly and her mom are poor but very close to each other and can talk about anything, except Dad. Holly's friends are her mom's friends too and the relation ship between the girls is somewhat Steel Magnolias-esque. A few miles down the road, there is a prestigious school for musically-talented teens which Holly dreams of attending. After her perfectly gorgeous, sweet, caring, and never overpowering boyfriend (whom her mother adores), sends a demo tape of Haley to the school, Holly is scored an auditions and soon accepted with a full scholarship. She then excels at her new school.
In a seemingly last minute attempt to add depth to the fairy tale, Holly's mom holds a deep, dark, secret about Holly's past which "threatens to tear their relationship apart." However, as I hope most (hint hint) adopted girls would agree, the secret is not so bad.
Even though A Mother's Gift targets ten-year-olds, the writing is overly simple ("totally" is a regularly appearing adjective). I wouldn't buy it for my little sister's birthday, if I had a little sister. ...
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