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Room to Grow Paperback – May 5, 2000


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Golden Guides from St. Martin's Press (May 5, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312263848
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312263843
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,223,559 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

In Room to Grow, editor Christina Baker Kline has collected the essays of 22 writers reflecting on life as parents and exploring the "whys" rather than the "how-tos" of parenting. As in her acclaimed first collection, Child of Mine, Baker Kline demonstrates her ability to draw from each of her contributors the deep essence and meaning of their experience. As a result, this book, while more diverse and less focused than Child of Mine (which concentrated on the first year of parenthood), still resounds with insight, humor, and thought-provoking excellence. The diversity of these personal essays--the trouble and trauma of naming a child, the nightly reading ritual, the experience of adoption, the decision to have only one child--is highly appropriate for the subject matter, which includes the experience of parenting children as a whole, from toddlerhood to pre-adolescence, and the voices of both fathers and mothers.

From Lindsay Fleming's heartbreak at a daughter's public soiling of herself, to Hillary Seldan Illick's hysterical essay about her difficult preschool daughter ("I thought about printing up a bumper sticker: WHAT YOU CANNOT STAND ABOUT YOUR CHILD, YOU REALLY CANNOT STAND ABOUT YOURSELF"), to Rob Spillman's learning nursery rhymes for the first time, this collection has both breadth and breath, and resounds with both love and meaning. --Ericka Lutz --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Novelist Kline, coauthor of a book on mothers and daughters and editor of a collection of essays on becoming a mother, asked writersAmale and female, black and white, famous and less soAto write about their experiences as parents. The result is a strong collection of heartfelt essays dealing with the joys, frustrations, insecurities, and discoveries of parenthood. We hear from a stay-at-home father, an adoptive mother, a father who wonders what to do with a daughter, and a mother who wonders the same things about sons. We watch a little boy throw his arms around his mother and a teenager reject affection or communication. Tony Eprile writes lyrically about reading to his son, and Kevin Canty finds a new way to spend quality time with childrenAthe carpool. Noelle Oxenhandler discovers that "although in their immense need of attention they devour our time, they also lavish on us...the infinity of the unhurried present moment." Brief biographies of the writers are included. Recommended for public and academic libraries.ANancy Patterson Shires, East Carolina Univ., Greenville, NC
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By audrey TOP 500 REVIEWER on October 31, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I had really enjoyed the same editor's volume of essays on parenting in the first year, called 'Child of Mine', and so I was anxious to read this book, which contains essays by various authors on their experiences in raising children a little older (generally between two and ten years of age).
At first I was slightly disappointed because a number of the essays didn't seem to be of immediate interest to me personally, and because this collection did not seem to have the same coherence as the first. But after I began to read, I found myself making little notes of agreement in the margins, underlining sympathetic or insightful passages, and smiling at the experiences similar to my own. Even when an essay was not immediately relevant to me (such as the selections on adoption and raising twins), I found instances of shared experience with the writers, who seemed to be as awestruck and profoundly affected as me by their adventures in parenting.
Oddly enough, in reviewing the book, I found I most enjoyed the selections by the male contributors -- delighted at similarities of common experience and enlightened by the differences -- often told with great humor. So this book also helped me to appreciate the unique experience of fatherhood.
Very enjoyable.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Anne Burt on November 21, 2001
Format: Hardcover
As my daughter grew from a baby to a toddler, I found myself as confused about parenting books as I was about her clothing size. No books seemed to fit my needs: I no longer wanted the "new parent hand holding" books, but I didn't feel ready to approach this new stage without the comfort I've always derived from reading thoughtful -- and thought-provoking -- essays about personal experiences similar to my own. When a friend told me about "Room To Grow" I was relieved; when I started to read the essays, I was ecstatic. This book was exactly what I was looking for: smart, moving pieces about the kind of parenting issues the parenting books ignore. I am certain I'll come back to this book again and again as my daughter grows older. Every parent should know about this collection.
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Format: Paperback
I read 'Child of Mine' during my pregnancy many times and since then many many times over. I expected to find the same joy in reading this new collection of parenting stories, but although most are well written, sometimes poignant, definitely moving - I did not find that as a whole the book worked well. I think the editor was perhaps a liitle confused as to the true focus of the book, and as a result the stories veer off to strange directions, not really connected and not giving a satisfying feeling at the end of the reading. Still I have to say that I am glad I read it as each tale gives a new perspective omn the daunting joy that is parenthhood, and I do recommend it as an addition to Child of Mine.
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By Busymom on February 26, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
These well written essays made me laugh and sigh. It's great to know that essentially every parent has similar challenges in raising kids, and it's helpful to view myself objectively.
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More About the Author

Christina Baker Kline was born in Cambridge, England, and raised there as well as in the American South and Maine. She is the author of five novels: Orphan Train, Bird in Hand, The Way Life Should Be, Desire Lines, and Sweet Water. She is co-editor, with Anne Burt, of About Face: Women Write about What They See When They Look in the Mirror and co-author, with Christina L. Baker, of The Conversation Begins: Mothers and Daughters Talk about Living Feminism. She has edited three other anthologies: Child of Mine, Room to Grow, and Always Too Soon. Writer-in-Residence at Fordham University from 2007 to 2011, Kline has also taught literature and creative writing at Yale, NYU, UVA, and Drew University. A graduate of Yale, Cambridge University, and the University of Virginia, where she was a Hoyns Fellow in Fiction Writing, Kline is a recipient of a Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation Fellowship and several research fellowships, and has been a Writer-in-Residence at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. Kline lives with husband and three sons in Montclair, New Jersey. She is at work on another novel and an anthology.

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