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Soaring Solo: On the Joys (Yes, Joys!) of Being a Single Mother Paperback – April 9, 2001
A light and optimistic book, verging at times on silliness, Wendy Keller's song of praise to single motherhood should be an encouragement to anyone who has gone on a date with a smear of baby poop on her shirtsleeve. In very brief chapters, she describes such trials as the Homework Wars, her attempts to find balance, and her recurrent self-doubt as a parent. She provides quotes from her favorite performers and books, especially Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi's Finding Flow, which advocates finding pleasure in duty.
Keller's emphasis on the positive can be very funny, as in her chapter on worry, "Crying in the Dark," in which she suggests facing the Worst Thing That Can Possibly Happen, and then realizing how you could survive it. "Let's say you get evicted," she argues. "It's better than being executed at dawn for a crime you didn't commit and having your child raised by the state to hate your memory. There are plenty of examples in history of this happening."
On a more sober note, the author's daughter Sophia is her third child. The first two were killed in a car crash. Maybe it is this horrific loss that has helped focus Keller's mind on how much is possible, after all, and on how not to waste precious present moments by brooding about the past or future. --Regina Marler
From Library Journal
In Keller's previous book, The Cult of the Born-Again Virgin (Health Communications, 2000), she promoted celibacy for divorced and single women until they have carefully explored their future options. Here, she expands on that theme to reassure single moms that they are capable, talented, and certainly not alone. Her tone is motivational and feel-good, almost Chicken Soup for the Soul-like, though the message wears thin after several chapters. Many of her anecdotes are also disconnected, some sounding like fables only lacking a "And the moral is..." ending. Some references to interesting books need updating as well (one is out of print, and another is listed by an inverted title). Keller opens each chapter with a funny quote, but will her readers appreciate her "joys" of being a single mother? Somehow, this misses the mark.
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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