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Nine Months

3.23  ·  Rating details ·  333 ratings  ·  77 reviews
A young Brooklyn mother, shaken by her unexpected (third) pregnancy, abandons her husband and kids and takes off on a cross-country road trip.
Published August 21st 2012 by Soho Press (first published July 17th 2012)
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3.23  · 
Rating details
 ·  333 ratings  ·  77 reviews

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Dec 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Bomer nails so much dark truth in this highly entertaining and bold novel. I loved Sonia, the young mother who finds that she's unexpectedly pregnant, but I also love so many of the other characters throughout this rollicking story--Sonia's young sons, her agitated husband, her washed-up hometown friends, her weird old drug friend Katrina, her judgmental sister, and her confrontational ex-lover/art teacher. Well, maybe I don't love the characters as much as I'm super impressed by Bomer's talent ...more
Lisa Brackmann
Jun 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book! I would warn that it's a somewhat transgressive view of motherhood and pregnancy, and it's not for everyone. The MC, Sonia, behaves badly. Very badly. The sort of behavior that had me alternating between moaning and laughing out loud. NINE MONTHS has some important things to say as well, about the conflicts between women's roles and women's creative ambitions, even as it to some degree affirms the fundamental creativity of creating life and giving birth.

If you're the sort of
Aug 25, 2012 rated it liked it
The most compelling reason why I read this book was curiosity: was it possible for me to despise a main character for the duration of the entire novel, or would I come to like Sonia?

Turns out I pretty much hated her from the start and did not stop.

Paula Bomer's Nine Months purports to be a resounding "Bitch, please" to all of those glowy, so happy to be pregnant, my life is now fulfilled novels about pregnancy.

But it isn't.

Instead, it features some of the most detestable characters you will enco
Shelleyrae at Book'd Out
Nine Months is an audacious novel that explores the difficult journey of a woman who is struggling to balance her need for individuality with motherhood. Sonia was relieved to find that mothering was becoming a little easier as her two young sons began to gain independence. However her dreams of reclaiming the ambitions she held before their birth is shattered when she discovers she is pregnant again. Ruling out an abortion, Sonia attempts to reconcile the impending birth with her feelings of lo ...more
Jun 10, 2012 rated it it was ok
At first, this book looked promising. It was similar to a short story I wanted to write myself when I was in the hazy, troubled early months of caring for infant twins. I had real and powerful fantasies of just leaving, taking our crappy Acura and driving to Kansas. I worried about details like how I would deal with my painful nursing breasts when the babies weren't around. Mostly, though, I just dreamed about how great 12 hours of sleep alone in a hotel would feel.

Of course I never did leave fo
Meredith Barnes
Apr 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This story of a mother's attempt to run from her third, unplanned, pregnancy is certainly dark(ly funny), but I was pleasantly surprised by the flashes of undeniable affection she feels for the life she's compelled to leave behind, if only for a few months. Those moments of ambivalence really brought out sincerity in the book. And, as one would expect from the author behind the collection BABY, the writing is stellar.
Jul 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is a fast, engaging read, and Paula Bomer makes it seem effortless.

A lot of people aren't going to like this narrator. If you think women, particularly mothers, should always say and do the "right" thing, then this book is going to anger you. If this story were narrated by a man, people wouldn't be freaking out.

I love Paula Bomer.

Sam O'Heren
Jun 28, 2012 rated it did not like it
Not one character in this book worthy of my time.
Richard  Thomas
Aug 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing

Don’t let the egg on the cover fool you—it’s riddled with cracks. Nine Months (Soho Press) by Paula Bomer is the opposite of every clichéd story about mothers, birth, children, marriage and identity. It is the raw, honest and brutal story of Sonia, a mother pregnant with her third child, and unhappy with every aspect of her life. She used to be a painter, she used to run wild and free, sleeping with whomever she wanted to, living for
nomadreader (Carrie D-L)
Dec 11, 2012 rated it it was amazing
(originally published at

The basics: Nine Months is the story of Brooklyn wife and mom of two Sonia, who finds herself unintentionally and unhappily pregnant with number three. With frustration mounting, Sonia takes off on a cross-country trip alone--and does so many things pregnant women aren't supposed to do.

My thoughts: I've been saving Nine Months to read until I was very, very pregnant. I'm so glad I did because it was fun to live vicariously through Sonia.
Adrienne Urbanski
May 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is probably the first book about motherhood that I have been able to relate to. Sonia, the protagonist, discovers that, much to her dismay, she is unexpectedly pregnant with her third child. This pregnancy is especially burdensome as Sonia was finally expecting to make time for herself and her artistic ambitions. Fueled by confusion, dissatisfaction, and anger she embarks on a spontaneous roadtrip to retrace her life steps and along the way engages in such forbidden acts as casual sex, drin ...more
Pat Pujolas
Jun 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Paula Bomer is a dangerously original voice and a master of contemporary fiction. She carves out characters using an x-acto blade and places them in situations that will no doubt polarize the audience. You may love this book. You may not. But there's no denying the beauty of Paula's writing, and more importantly, the deep truths which it reveals. About love. About sex. About birth and parenthood and life itself. Not just one of the best books I've ever read, it's also the bravest.
Bud Smith
Dec 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Great book. Tough writing. Honest writing. Has all the pain and joy of life. Contains all the blood possible. No sleep walking-style wiring here. Enjoyed spending time with the narrator, a narrator who is human above all else and who fails and flails but keeps on fighting the good fight. More brutally powerful books like this please, universe.
Jun 24, 2012 rated it liked it
While I could relate to a lot of the main character's feelings surrounding her unexpected third pregnancy and life as a mom, I felt that the behavior and dialogue was a bit unrealistic.
Aug 08, 2017 rated it it was ok
I hate to give this book a bad review, because I really enjoyed Bomer's short story collection "Inside Madeleine". However, "Nine Months" doesn't come close. There are sparks of her brilliance as a writer - especially the beginning of the novel, and the powerful last scene in the second-to-last chapter - but those were lost in overall chaos.

I still appreciate the concept of this book, very much so. It's what made me curious in the first place. There is a taboo surrounding unhappy mothers and it
Jul 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
Though the subject of a dissatisfied mother is not a new one, Paula Bomer, once again, does it differently than anyone else. As in her later collection Inside Madeleine, she is here aware of the female body in graphic detail, an awareness that is constant whether she's describing pregnancy, sex, or childbirth. This doesn't prevent Nine Months from being clever, insightful, and often funny, but it does ensure these observations never feel detached from the physical experience of motherhood. Bomer ...more
Apr 25, 2018 rated it liked it
Blunt, honest, fun + totally cringe-inducing. I can't say I loved Sonia (actually I often disliked her), but I enjoyed that she was so unlikable. She is an incredibly real character, and even among all the horrible shit she does, she's capable of real love + regret. It was a refreshing read at its best, and only guilty of an extreme, yet somehow still believable, main character at its worst.
Nov 08, 2017 rated it it was ok
The book is a little bit of "Wild" and "Gone Girl" except I wasn't quite sure why Sonia, the main character wanted to escape her life. She is reckless and restless yet appears as any mother and wife who takes care of her family. There are parts of the book that are vulgar. The book was a little too long to be fully invested in it.
Anna Hawes
Apr 24, 2018 rated it it was ok
Interesting premise and some lines were definitely the kind of truths you keep to yourself because you are embarrassed of how others would judge them. But most of the characters are nuts so conversation with them (which is all the book is) feels pointless. Also gratuitous sex and language
Whitney Sanchez
Jun 17, 2017 rated it it was ok
Not great. Not bad.
Feb 25, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2018, fiction
I hated every single character. But at least it was entertaining?
Waitalie Nat
Jan 19, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014-books
So, let me start off by clarifying something: I am not a mother. I can't make any claims whatsoever about how difficult pregnancy is and about how babies suck the life out of you. I can't.
However, I am a daughter, I'm about to turn 19 and I have a mother who shares more secrets and thoughts with me than I care to admit to the public. She's never lied to me about how hard motherhood is, she's never embellished her thoughts about pregnancy and adulthood for my own sake and, what's more, I know th
Melanie Page
Jan 23, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In Nine Months, a novel that begins at the end then takes us back to show how we got there, Paula Bomer puts her naughty nature as a writer up front. In the first paragraph alone, be prepared to read words like "bloated," "ripped and torn," and "yellowish-green umbilical cord." She puts "placenta" and "hurdles" in the same sentence. Of course, she wouldn't be Paula Bomer if she didn't. Or, maybe you won't be prepared for Nine Months, the novelization of the anti-mother, because you haven't read ...more
Luisa Fer
Oct 18, 2012 rated it it was ok
I was looking forward to this novel. Since the moment Paula Bomer announced it, I had it on my wish list. I loved her collection Baby and other stories and I was expecting nothing less.

Of the entire novel the only paragraph I truly appreciated was the opening paragraph. My expectations were set at that level but then something happened, the same thing that plagues so many writers that desperately need the attention, she started to write with the purpose of shocking and she doesn't succeed.

She te
Jan 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
From the very first page of "Nine Months," the reader is immersed in the internal world of Sonia, a newly pregnant woman who already has two sons, ages 4 and 2. A Brooklyn housewife, she struggles against the dull sameness of her life. Having made some kind of peace with it, even hoping to resume her painting now that the boys are older, the unexpected pregnancy literally throws her for a loop, and from the very first weeks, the familiar nausea and hormonal imbalance add to the loss of equilibri ...more
Sonia Reppe
Sep 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Sonia is 35 and horrified to be pregnant again, just as she was feeling like herself again, two years after her last pregnancy. Her two boys still young but not babies anymore, she and her husband have just started romancing again (this book uses the F word) and now this!

This is one of the most realistic books about "motherhood" that I've read, because it's not really about that, it's about a woman from Brooklyn who feels trapped even though she loves her husband. The writing is in-your-face ho
Susan Rukeyser
Apr 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Some readers will recoil from this book. They won’t like it. They won’t approve. Motherhood is considered by many to be sacred, and by sacred I mean not to be questioned. I praise Paula Bomer for not just questioning it but spilling a dirty secret, the fleeting wish for escape. Usually, mothers swiftly dismiss this thought, then deny it.

But Bomer gives us the story of Sonia, a mother already, in the third trimester of her unexpected third pregnancy, and in full-blown panic. Sonia knows her iden
Author: Paula Bomer
Published By: Soho Press
Age Recommended: Adult
Rating: 4
Blog For: GMTA


"Nine Months: A Novel by Paula Bomer was definitely a different kind of book to read. Sonia is unexpectedly pregnant with her third child and being somewhat confused, caught up with dissatisfaction and anger goes a a crazy road trip that retraced her life. The trip took Sonia through casual sex, drinking and even smoking weed with people and places from her past....strangers, friends and even family.

Jan 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2013
This book isn't perfect, but it would make for a hell of a discussion.

Its the story of a married mother who gets unexpectedly pregnant, goes a little bit crazy, and then runs away. Its also one of the most unflinching and honest novels about pregnancy I've ever read.

Sonia encounters incredibly common and natural feelings and continues to turn the wrong way into them, time after time. She is introspective and narcissistic, and has very little empathy for anyone around her. After the halfway poi
Shelby Harper
Jul 15, 2013 rated it liked it
I appreciate this book as an exercise in pushing the boundaries on an unlikeable character. The main character is a mother who abandons her husband and two children after accidentally becoming pregnant with a third baby. She goes on a cross-country self-exploration trip, in which she shags a random stranger at a gas stop, drinks and smokes pot.

The book felt unfinished and the ending rushed, wrapped up too neatly, and I felt unsatisfied with unanswered questions. i also didn't get how the main c
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What's the Name o...: SOLVED - Book About Woman Abandoning Her Family [s] 11 50 Aug 13, 2014 03:48PM  
Should Be X rated 1 5 Jan 25, 2013 08:16AM  

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I'm the author of the novel, Nine Months (Soho Press), Baby and Other Stories (Word Riot Press) and the forthcoming collection, Inside Madeleine (Soho Press). I also am the publisher and editor at Sententia Books. I grew up in South Bend, Indiana and have lived in Brooklyn, New York for over 20 years.
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