Class Mom

Holt. Aug. 2017. 304p. ISBN 9781250124692. $26; ebk. ISBN 9781250124708 F
OrangeReviewStarDEBUT Jen Dixon is a third-time class mom (her two daughters—by two different men—are now in college). She and Ron, whom she refers to as her "first husband," are raising their newly minted kindergartner Max. At the insistence of her best friend, PTA president Nina, Jen reluctantly takes on the job for Max's class. She holds nothing back as she sends out snarky, sometimes offensive, always funny (to those who get her humor) emails to the class list. She duly notes response times and is not above taking a bribe when she assigns field-trip volunteers, conference times, and more throughout the year. Gelman's characters run the gamut from a stereotypical, oversensitive allergy-mom, to two mothers whom Jen can't tell apart, to a supersexy kindergarten teacher who refuses to talk about her students until the designated conference time. There are plenty of soapy plot threads, too, including Jen getting reacquainted with an old flame and trying to get in shape for a "mud run."
VERDICT Gelman pens an uproariously funny first novel with a relatable protagonist. Moms will clamor for this story, trying to hold back tears of laughter as Jen establishes her voice and place as the class mom. [See Prepub Alert, 2/27/17.]
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