The Other Mother

St. Martin’s. Jan. 2021. 320p. ISBN 9781250103468. $26.99. F
Thirteen-year-old Michael Parsons keeps a list of his problems: He hates his stepfather; he’s always getting in trouble at school; he is practically the sole caregiver for his two younger siblings; he has a secret he can’t share with anyone; and now his mother has been replaced by another mother. When no one else in his family recognizes that his real mother is missing, Michael takes it upon himself to find out the truth. This is not a missing-persons case, though; it’s a severe psychological break that occurs when a young man is forced to carry emotional baggage that would be difficult for someone twice his age. Luckily, Michael has a caring school psychologist and an understanding new friend who will help him begin to unburden himself of his secrets and find the mother for whom he is so desperately searching.
VERDICT Dicks (Twenty-One Truths About Love) doesn’t seem concerned with medical accuracy, but it is doubtful that readers will mind too much as they laugh, cry, and cheer their way through this touching coming-of-age tale. For fans of Mark Haddon’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time and Andrew David MacDonald’s When We Were Vikings.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing