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Places to Look for a Mother: A Novel
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Places to Look for a Mother: A Novel

3.44 of 5 stars 3.44  ·  rating details  ·  119 ratings  ·  18 reviews
In the tradition of Mona Simpson's Anywhere But Here, Places to Look for a Mother tells a tale of mostly maddening mother-daughter bonds. Forgiveness is always there, but it's hard to find. And Stansbury's fractured Taylor family, led by the thoroughly eccentric matriarch, Miriam Taylor, usually loses it. With lithe prose, pitch-perfect dialogue, and gloriously real charac...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published April 13th 2003 by Carroll & Graf (first published February 19th 2002)
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(showing 1-30 of 200)
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I got about two-thirds of the way through this book and stopped reading. It was depressing, and although there were moments of brief insight and humor that I appreciated, there were also themes that I didn't like. I like to read for education and also for entertainment - I didn't really get either from this book. It's going back to the Goodwill Store.
This book took an interesting trip into the lives of one very disfunctional family lead by their disturbed and immature mother.
It took me a while to really see what the point of the book was but I liked the story and the characters involvement with each other.
Beautiful and poignant. Shocking at times, but provided just enough salt for the wounds.
Jane Dewitt
if you have had a somewhat eccentric mother, you'll like this. I did.
Apr 12, 2011 Heather marked it as to-read
Shelves: never-finished
I'm going to put this one back on the shelf. I'll try again someday.
This book was so good. I couldnt put it down.
Jessica (booneybear)
I find this book very difficult to review. Nicole Stansbury is an excellent author. Without her wonderful storytelling, I don't know how I would have had the patience for such a dysfunctional family. I am a person that craves stability and there was absolutely no stability for the family in this book. I found the family very maddening. But I suppose that was the entire point of the book.

Stansbury did an excellent job making the reader go through so many emotions toward the character of the mothe...more
May 22, 2008 Gretchen rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: disfunctional familes, touchy-feely folks
Recommended to Gretchen by: I just "happened" upon it at the library sale
I am having a hard time thinking of how to review this book. At the beginning, I really loved the book. I love how "wordy" the author is and how easy it is to relate to the main character. In the middle of the book, I was sick of all of the mother's CRAP. I really wanted to tell her off for being such a selfish, self-centered jerk. But, by the end of the book, Lucy (main character) helped redeem her mother & I could understand why the family had put up with the mom for so long. It is just ho...more
I initially pick up this book read the first few pages and put it back on my bookshelf. After a year of it sitting there I finally decided to read it and wished I hadn't. I can't say this is one of my favorite books. It is my first time reading Nicole Stansbury and maybe this shouldn't have been my first choice. The mother in this book absolutely frustrated me and made me angry at how foolish and childish she was. For being a psychiatrist I honestly think she needed to see one. I felt bad for he...more
Nancy Monson
I read this book in the throes of watching my mother die and I suppose I was looking for places to look for a mother, too. Although my story is different than the main character's, and I did not find what I was looking for, there is solace in the book in the character's ultimate acceptance of her mother's weird world, her commitment to move beyond a lack of deserved mothering and make her own life, and a willingness to become a mere observer of her own mother's weird world without becoming trapp...more
Nicole is my son's favorite teacher and she is also a great author. She offers enough description that you can picture everything, without being overbearing with nonsense details that you could do without (as I'm finding with "Love in the Time of Cholera").
In so many ways it is tough to believe this book is pure fiction. I've known people like this mom, and what early on seems like harmless eccentrics, later evolves to be an obvious deterioration of her mental heatlh. There was humor to be foun...more
The story of a poisonous relationship of mother and daughter with a mother that would be unbelievable if you haven't read Glass Castles. I enjoyed the locations--mostly Utah, but some California--Solvang!, Wyoming, and some of the descriptions of life growing up in the 70's. This was as depressing as Glass Castles with none of the humor or feeling of triumph.
A bit like Angela's Ashes in that the misery just goes on and on much longer than necessary to get how disfunctional things were. If you have a parent with Borderline Personality Disorder, or some such malady, it may be interesting to compare your experience with this but otherwise, not worth your time.
I thought this was well written, heartbreaking and tragic. I only give it three stars because I REALLY, REALLY hated the mother. But, I suppose that was the point. Those poor girls!
Story about a family. Mother is high-strung and dramatic and daughters lives are in general upheaval because of it.
Strange, I feel like it is about some one I know.
Gritty and raw recollection of growing up with a disfunctional mother and a father unsure how to love. It's mildly entertaining. It will keep you from getting rings on your wooden coffee tables if you need a quick fix. :/
Amanda marked it as to-read
Sep 15, 2014
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Linda Oates marked it as to-read
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Sep 06, 2014
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Aug 31, 2014
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