Monday, February 8, 2010

Letter to My Daughter by George Bishop

Letter to My Daughter: A NovelTitle:  Letter to My Daughter
Author:  George Bishop
Publisher:  Ballantine Books
Publication Date:  February 16, 2010
Format:  Hardcover, 160 pages
Age Group:  Adult

When her almost fifteen year old daughter runs away after they have a fight, Laura sits down to write her a letter describing her teen years.  It is a confession of sorts for Laura who now reveals why she was sent away to a strict Catholic school, her relationship through letters with a boy serving in Vietnam, and the meaning behind her tattoo.

Letter to My Daughter is a very short novel at only 160 pages.  The length and the conversational tone of the letter make it a very fast read despite the very emotional content.  Laura's letter to her daughter, Liz, is filled with the powerful emotion of a mother worrying for her daughter as well as the emotions she felt as a teenager.  The book was less about the relationship between mother and daughter as it was the experience of being a daughter and being a mother.  We never actually meet Liz, only seeing her through her mother's eyes, and we never meet Laura's mother but see her through the eyes of her daughter.  Laura is both the author and the central character as this is her story.

Letter to My Daughter is honest, straightforward, and filled with the pain and confusion of being a teenager.  Laura fully reveals herself to her daughter in this letter yet, for this book, whether Liz actually reads the letter and gains a deeper understanding of her mother is irrelevant.  It is enough that Laura finally told her story.

Letter to My Daughter officially goes on sale February 16, 2010 but can be pre-ordered now.  This review is based on a paperback, advance reader's edition which was sent to me by the publisher in response to my request after seeing the book advertised in the Shelf Awareness newsletter.

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