Mothers in Fiction

A mother’s love is unconditional and never-ending. It is always there to fill our hearts when we need it the most. Let’s celebrate Mother’s Day by reading a novel about mom. 

One Italian summer : a novel  by Rebecca Serle

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The New York Times bestselling author of the modern classic In Five Years returns with a moving and unforgettable exploration of the powerful bond between mother and daughter set on the breathtaking Amalfi Coast. “When Katy’s mother dies, she is left reeling. Carol wasn’t just Katy’s mom, but her best friend and first phone call. To make matters worse, the mother-daughter trip of a lifetime looms: two weeks in Positano.

Golden Girl: a novel by Elin Hilderbrand

Entering the afterlife due to a hit and run accident, a successful author learns she can observe the earthly lives of her nearly grown children and is also permitted three “nudges” to alter the outcome of events.

Reunion Beach: stories inspired by Dorothea Benton Frank

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Inspired by the title Dorothea Benton Frank had planned for her next book–Reunion Beach–close friends and colleagues pay tribute in stories and poems that celebrate Frank, a prolific author who had a love for the Lowcountry of her native South Carolina.

Tales From the Cafe: a novel by Toshikazu Kawaguchi

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In a back alley in Tokyo, there is a café that has been serving carefully brewed coffee for more than one hundred years. Local legend says that this shop offers something else besides coffee — the chance to travel back in time. With faces both familiar and new, Tales from the Cafe follows the story of four patrons who visit to take advantage of café Funiculi Funicula’s time-traveling offer and revisit moments with family, friends and lovers.

Black Cake: a novel by Charmaine Wilkerson

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In this moving debut novel, two estranged siblings must set aside their differences to deal with their mother’s death and her hidden past–a journey of discovery that takes them from the Caribbean to London to California and ends with her famous black cake. In present-day California, Eleanor Bennett’s death leaves behind a puzzling inheritance for her two children, Byron and Benny: a traditional Caribbean black cake, made from a family recipe with a long history, and a voice recording.

Black Buck by Mateo Askaripour

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For fans of Sorry to Bother You and Wolf of Wall Street: a crackling, satirical debut novel about a young black man who accidentally impresses a CEO while serving his Starbucks order, catapulting him into the opportunity of a lifetime-a shot at stardom as the lone black salesman at an eccentric, mysterious, and wildly successful startup where, he will soon learn, nothing is as it seems. 

The Mother’s Promise by K. D. Alden

“Virginia, 1924. Ruth Ann Riley is 17 years old when she gives birth to a baby girl. Unwed and under-educated, she’s deemed “feeble-minded” — just like her own mother — and sent to live in a state-run institution where the doctors decide she must be sterilized “for the greater good.” But Ruth Ann won’t give up her baby Annabel or the hope of future children without a fight, even though her hardscrabble life and sixth-grade education have in no way prepared her to take on the Supreme Court of the United States.

With Love From London: a novel by Sarah Jio

A librarian inherits a bookshop from her estranged mother, leading her halfway across the world on a journey of self-discovery that transcends time and honors the unbreakable bonds of love and family. When librarian Valentina Baker was a teenager, her mother, Eloise, unexpectedly fled to her native London, leaving Val and her father on their own. Now in her thirties and fresh out of a failed marriage, Val feels a nagging disenchantment with her life–and knows she is still heartbroken over her mother’s abandonment.

The Mother Next Door: a novel by Tara Laskowski

The annual Halloween block party is the pinnacle of the year on idyllic suburban cul-de-sac Ivy Woods Drive. An influential group of neighborhood moms–known as the Ivy Five–plans the event for months. Except the Ivy Five has been four for a long time. When a new mother moves to town, eager to fit in, the moms see it as an opportunity to make the group whole again. This year’s block party should be the best yet … until the women start receiving anonymous messages threatening to expose the quiet neighborhood’s dark past–and the lengths they’ve gone to hide it.

The Horsewoman: a novel by James Patterson

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Maggie Atwood and Becky McCabe, mother and daughter, both champion riders, vowed to never, ever, go up against one another. Until the tense, harrowing competitions leading to the Paris Olympics. Mother and daughter share a dream: to be the best horsewoman in the world.

The School for Good Mothers: a novel by Chan, Jessamine

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 Set in near-future America, The School for Good Mothers introduces readers to a government-run reform program where bad mothers are retrained using robot doll children with artificial intelligence. Protagonist Frida Liu, a 39-year-old Chinese-American single mother in Philadelphia, loses custody of her 18-month-old daughter, Harriet, after she leaves Harriet home alone for two hours on one very bad day. To regain custody, Frida must spend a year at a newly-created institution, where she practices parenting with bad mothers from all over the county.

The Unheard: a novel by Nicci French

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In this new heart-pounding standalone from the internationally bestselling author that People calls “razor sharp,” a single mother suspects her young daughter has witnessed a horrible crime when she draws a disturbing picture–but the deadly path to unravel the truth could cost her everything. Maybe Tess is overprotective, but passing her daughter off to her ex and his new young wife fills her with a sense of dread. It’s not that Jason is a bad father, it just hurts to see him enjoying married life with someone else.

Bright Burning Things: a novel by Lisa Harding

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Sonya used to perform on stage. She used to attend glamorous parties, date handsome men, ride in fast cars. But somewhere along the way, the stage lights Sonya lived for dimmed for good. And then, in their absence, came darkness–blackouts, empty cupboards, hazy nights she can’t remember. Haunted by her failed career and unresolved childhood trauma, Sonya has fallen deep into an alcoholic abyss. 

The Last Story of Mina Lee by Nancy Jooyoun Kim

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Riveting and unconventional, The Last Story of Mina Lee traces the far-reaching consequences of secrets in the lives of a Korean immigrant mother and her daughter. Margot Lee’s mother is ignoring her calls. Margot can’t understand why, until she makes a surprise trip home to Koreatown, LA, and finds that her mother has suspiciously died. Determined to discover the truth, Margot unravels her single mother’s past as a Korean War orphan and an undocumented immigrant, only to realize how little she truly knew about her mother, Mina.

What’s Mine and Yours: a novel by Naima Coster

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When a county initiative in the Piedmont of North Carolina forces the students at a mostly black public school on the east side to move across town to a nearly all-white high school on the west, the community rises in outrage. For two students, quiet and aloof Gee and headstrong Noelle, these divisions will extend far beyond their schooling. As their paths collide and overlap over the course of thirty years, their two seemingly disconnected families begin to form deeply knotted, messy ties that shape the trajectory of their lives.

Little Pieces of Me: a novel by Alison Hammer

Investigating DNA revelations that say her father is a man she never met, Paige learns about her mother’s past as a straitlaced university student who had a one-night stand with the campus golden boy.

Now: When Paige Meyer gets an email from a DNA testing website announcing that her father is a man she never met, she is convinced there must be a mistake.

Chouette by Claire Oshetsky

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Tiny is pregnant. Her husband is delighted. “You think this baby is going to be like you, but it’s not like you at all,” she warns him. “This baby is an owl-baby.” When Chouette is born small and broken-winged, Tiny works around the clock to meet her daughter’s needs. Left on her own to care for a child who seems more predatory bird than baby, Tiny vows to raise Chouette to be her authentic self.

Never Far Away by Michael Koryta

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Nina Morgan’s bloodstained car was found a decade ago on a lonely Florida road. Forensic evidence suggested she’d been murdered, although her body was never found. Her disappearance left her infant children to the care of their father. Once a pilot, mother, wife, and witness to a gruesome crime, Nina had to flee her old life to save her family.

Hongmei, Adult Services & Acquisitions Librarian

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