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Glitter and Glue

3.76 of 5 stars 3.76  ·  rating details  ·  8,859 ratings  ·  1,371 reviews

From theauthor of The Middle Place comes a new memoir that examines the bond—sometimes nourishing, sometimes exasperating, occasionally divine—between mothers and daughters.

When Kelly Corrigan was in high school, her mother neatly summarized the family dynamic as “Your father’s the glitter but I’m the glue.” This meant nothing to Kelly, who left ch
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published February 4th 2014 by Ballantine Books
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On the surface, this seems like a fast, easy read because it is--but there are a whole lot of layers built in that I'll be thinking about for a long time: the whole business about when you start channeling your own mother in unexpected ways, the things you learn from how you're parented (by both parents) that don't necessarily present themselves until later in life, and how being a mama is simultaneously the hardest, most exciting, and most demanding way to spend one's time.

The secondary part o
Every daughter has a mother, and whilst some relationships are more fraught than others, I can only guess that no mother-daughter relationship is plain sailing at all times. This book struck so many chords with me, particularly having had an equally "uncool mother" like Kelly Corrigan's who wouldn't let me paint my nails, wear make-up, heck, even get contact lenses as she was "sensible" and would not pander to my vanity. Similarly, I wasn't allowed to watch trashy TV, read trashy books (Enid Bly ...more
I miss my mom. This memoir brings it all back. She died when I was 19, so I never got to experience being an adult with a mom. This memoir is about a daughter and her relationship with her mother over the years.

At one point the daughter/author/Kelly Corrigan is in Australia and a boy is explaining chess to her: The queen is the most important piece. She can move everywhere. And if she is gone, you're lost.

Later, she rewords this with "the mother". It's true.

NOTE: I listened to the audio of this,
Do not read this book while premenstrual and on a plane.

I grabbed this as a prepub galley from ALA Annual 2013. I haven't read Corrigan before, but I enjoyed her light, breezy, at times humorous style. This is a book about learning to appreciate the grown-ups in your life--in this case, Corrigan's strict, hard-to-please mother. Told through the lens of a memoir of her half-year as a nanny for a widower and his children in Australia, the premise is lightweight but the emotional impact is solid.
I wanted to like this more than I did. In fact, I want to give in 2.75 stars :). The memory of her travels abroad with the Tanner family after college were compelling and I really enjoyed the writing. I felt the current day "tie" to her mother was lacking and she didn't make me care about their relationship like I did about her relationship with the Tanners.
Glitter and Glue is a love story to Corrigan's mother that all women can relate to whether you have children or not. My mother in law gave me this book after she went to a book release event with the author, whom she found to be witty and funny. This book made me think of my own relationship with my mother and how blessed I was as a child, I am and still continue to be with my own sainted mother and how scared and excited I am to become a mother one day and most importantly that I need my mother ...more
I loved Kelly Corrigan's "The Middle Place" - even though I don't have children, I found her insight into the changing role of being an adult child to be very honest. As much as I loved TMP, I think I love "Glitter and Glue" more. It really resonated with me as someone who grew up idolizing her more exciting and jovial dad and getting frustrated with the rules-oriented, calm mom. I love the description of her mother summarizing "the division of labor in her family as 'Your father's the glitter, ...more
This book hit me in ways I didn't expect. It made me laugh but it made me cry so suddenly as her words snuck up on me. I related to this book on many levels. One I lost my mom when I was 17 and helped raise my three brothers one of which was only 1 1/2. I related to Evan.
My brother recently lost his wife to cancer leaving him to raise two children at 4 & 7 years old. I could see my brother in John.
My oldest daughter just became a mom and I see our relationship changing as moms united.

Dear Reader,

I read this book in 3 days. I suppose that says something about both its accessibility and its engagement level. This book was, however, nothing like I'd expected. Having never read anything by this author before, I wasn't prepared by her other works. Amber and I got this book as an ARC at BEA 2013, and we'd both been eager to get to it, especially having met the author and gotten our books signed. I think the title appealed to me most of all: it evoked memories of craf
Ayelet Waldman
Kelly did it again, brought us another heartbreaker that'll keep you laughing and crying.
It's probably me, not the book. But I had to force myself to finish. 2.5 star, with a .5 star given for the truthfulness level. And yet these "me, me, me" and "I had to find myself" books are just not my cup of tea. It was suggested as a cozy? Why does it not surprise me that when she finally was forced to physically and mentally work for others' wants and needs, she begins to wake up to her own past parental reality. Having spent 13 years taking care of ill parents and their house too, and just ...more
Glitter and Glue by Kelly Corrigan is a memoir about her life with her mom. The story follows Kelly’s but is a long reflection about her mother. The younger Kelly felt her mother was too hard, always had rules, didn’t let anything go and always pushed her. The older Kelly realized that her mother took her job as mother seriously.

What make this a great book are the emotions of a woman coming into her own. A woman who starts out feeling about her mom, like many of us did as a teenager {roll the ey
That was a real sob fest. I started it in the doctor's office but couldn't continue because I was tearing up in a waiting room full of strangers. I explained to the lady sitting next to me, who then showed me pictures on her phone of her 92 year old mother....when she was young and beautiful. She had movie star looks, reminded me of Lana Turner. This is a story that most every woman can relate to and then proceed to celebrate the uniqueness of her own mother. My mother passed 26 years ago but I ...more
Elizabeth A
The relationship between mothers and daughters is one that has been complicated since we first started walking upright as a species I'll bet. There is something about the mother-daughter bond that pulls and pushes at us, binds and embraces us, and one we often reject at the very core of our being when we are young. Most of us are horrified when we first hear something our mother would say come out of our mouth, but as we get older, we make our peace with that.

This memoir is a coming of age stor
I love this coming-of-age memoir. I have been meaning to read The Middle Place by the same author and picked this up when I saw it at the library. I may have read it at a vulnerable time when we are going through a lot with our aging parents while trying to manage the business of raising young children, but it was perfection. It's a quick but profound read.
By the time I finished this heartfelt book, tears quietly slid down my cheeks. After I read a certain quote, I sobbed. I will forever hold this in my heart, "You don't have to be able to decode every passage to want to hug it when you finish." Hug it, I did.
Kristin Schuck
A book club selection for this month, and a perfect one in the week leading up to Mothers Day. I have read another of her memoirs (The Middle Place), and I like her writing style - it feels casual and accessible. While I suspect she is actually nothing like me, the writing fools me into thinking that she is. But this is a nice reflection on our mothers' roles in our lives. While the author's mother is nothing like mine, the way that their relationship changes as they grow older is probably almos ...more
Glitter and Glue was my selection for the 2015 round of Postal Book Club 2. Because we have a limit of 225 pages and this was 226 of actual novel, that was my driving force to look at this one for my contribution.

Once I read the blurb on the book there were two other compelling reasons to read it.

First and foremost, I loved that most of Corrigan's story was set in Sydney. My daughter married an Aussie so she lives on the North Shore of the Sydney area. Anything that pulls my heart to Australia r
Oh how I wish we had partial stars in Goodreads, because I need them to accurately describe my feelings for this book! It wasn't bad enough for a two, but it also didn't earn a 3 in my mind. A 2.5 would be perfect here!

What did I like? It was a fast read and was enjoyable for the most part (when I could get past my annoyance with the narrator)

What didn't I like? While I found her experiences in Australia to be interesting, she was a bit whiny. Perhaps this is an honest reflection of her age/pers
Lauren Henderson
Your father may be the glitter, but I'm the glue.

Whoa... heartstrings.. hold on. This book is a great read for anyone who has a mom... so EVERYONE. I found myself tearing up often with memories of my own mom. Glitter and Glue is a beautiful tribute to the mother-daughter relationship.

Kelly Corrigan is a really great writer. I've never read anything by her, and I picked this one up solely because I love memoirs about mother-daughter relationships. She writes the story in first person, so it rea
Patti Henger
"Your dad's the glitter, but I'm the glue." I flew through this one...really looking forward to meeting her in Vermont:-) Corrigan does an excellent job articulating the disconnect that is often present between mothers and daughters. Due to lack of perspectives as kids, most of us can't even fathom our parents as having lives before we existed (just like it was mind boggling to see your teacher at the supermarket- gasp! they live in the classroom right??). One of my favorite excerpts was when K ...more
I listened to the audiobook of this in one long car trip, about 5 hours of total audio. When I got to the end, I was worried I'd have to pull over because of the tears. It's a gorgeous meditation on death and motherhood, which doesn't sound anywhere near as compelling as it is.

To be sure, this book was definitely in my wheelhouse - an American's recollection of the five months she spent nannying for a Sydney family in 1992. The daughter in the family must be exactly my age, which gave it a funny
A lovely tribute to mothers, Kelly Corrigan-style. I really liked "The Middle Place" and if you read that book, this is very similar. After college, Kelly sets out with a girlfriend to see the world and do exciting and interesting things. They run out of money in Australia and each of them takes a job as a nanny to save money so they can continue their adventures. Kelly's family consists of a widowed father, his young son and daughter, his stepson and father-in-law. The mother has recently died ...more
You know how when you take a picture of a picture it has that fuzzy/grainy quality? That's what this memoir was like for me. It starts with a flashback to when Corrigan found out she has cancer, then it flashes into an EXTENDED (basically the whole book) of a period of time she spent as a nanny in Australia to a family where the mom had just died of cancer, flashbacks to her childhood and different details about her own mom sprinkled throughout, then back to the cancer and then back to now. In o ...more
I really should not be surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. After hearing the author speak and read at an event it was clear that she was very charming, vivacious, and had a great sense of humor. And yet, I put this book off for a long time thinking that it would be good for a day when I wanted something "light". Instead I was riveted to her story and loved the emotional journey she takes discovering her own mother from half way across the world on her own trip to Australia. This book had ...more
I picked this up due to a suggestion and a stellar rating from my Aunt Libbie. She was right as, I have a feeling, she usually is. A must read for mothers and daughters. No matter who you are or what your relationship is with your mother, I think you will find some wisdom here. I think you will look harder at yours. I hear my Mom's voice in my head constantly. I loved those parts of the book when you knew she was hearing the words of wisdom she had ignored as a child/teen. Read it. You'll love i ...more
As I read Glitter and Glue, author Kelly Corrigan’s homage to her mother, I caught myself remembering an off-season trip I took to the Hamptons a few years ago. I had gone there with some friends with the intention of seeing an old boss perform in a community play. As young women in their twenties are sometimes in danger of doing, we blew off responsibility and opted instead to stay out too late socially – thereby missing the play. But we had another opportunity the next morning, a ten o’clock A ...more
Pardon me for thinking this book might have something to do with arts and crafts. Rather, this book shines a light on the Art and Craft of creating a family.

As a young woman, Corrigan sets out to travel the world - to leave her family behind, to Do Things and Create Life. "Things happen when you leave the house," she insists. Too soon she runs out of money and finds a job as a nanny for two young children whose mother has recently succumbed to cancer. To her surprise and chagrin, she consistentl
I so enjoyed reading this book and found so many parallels to my own life. I love Kelly Corrigan's self-deprecating humor, insights and perspective on the complexity of the mother-daughter relationship over time. Full disclosure: I won this in a Goodreads giveaway... but I loved it and will happily pass it along to others who are -- or will soon be -- Kelly Corrigan fans.
Artemisia Hunt
When an adventurous young girl leaves her home in America in search of fun and excitement in Australia, one would expect a story about peak experiences, physical exertion and natural wonders. Author Kelly Corrigan got all of these, just not on the wild terrain of Australia as she was planning, but instead in the suburban home of a widower and his 2 young children. Out of money and with few other options, Corrigan reluctantly accepts a position as a temporary live in nanny to this floundering cre ...more
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topics  posts  views  last activity   
Bookworm Bitches : March 2015: Glitter & Glue 15 84 Apr 27, 2015 02:59PM  
Goodreads Librari...: consolidate the multiple copies 2 15 Mar 08, 2015 10:03AM  
Mansfield Public ...: The"Glitter and Glue" review by Sharon Wapen 1 5 Aug 13, 2014 04:57PM  
Classic Readers : Classic Readers -- June 18 1 5 Jun 17, 2014 12:21PM  
Peggy Taylor vs. Ellen Tanner 1 12 May 06, 2014 12:05PM  
Interesting dynamics between Kelly's parents 1 11 Mar 13, 2014 07:37AM  
March Mamas Read: Glitter and Glue 2 30 Feb 13, 2014 01:17PM  
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Kelly Corrigan is a New York Times bestselling author whose writing has appeared in O Magazine, Glamour and Good Housekeeping. Her newspaper columns for the Bay Area News Group cover everyday matters from the power of an unequivocal apology to the contagious nature of weight gain, extramarital affairs and going green."
More about Kelly Corrigan...
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“But now I see there's no such thing as "a" woman, "one" woman. There are dozens inside every one of them. I probably should have figured this out sooner, but what child can see the women inside her mom, what with all the Motherness blocking out everything else?” 10 likes
“And it occurs to me that maybe the reason my mother was so exhausted all the time wasn’t because she was doing so much but because she was feeling so much.” 7 likes
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