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Are You My Mother?: A Comic Drama by Alison…
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Are You My Mother?: A Comic Drama (original 2012; edition 2012)

by Alison Bechdel

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6864613,895 (3.75)67
Member:mejix
Title:Are You My Mother?: A Comic Drama
Authors:Alison Bechdel
Info:Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (2012), Edition: First Edition, Hardcover, 304 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:***
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Are You My Mother?: A Comic Drama by Alison Bechdel (2012)

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Showing 1-5 of 45 (next | show all)
Probably not fair to compare them, but I can't help it. I didn't like this one as much as Fun Home. It was a lot more wordy and cerebral, and I admit that I just didn't understand a lot of the psychological terminology she used to tell the story. Also I read To The Lighthouse a few years ago and for me it was eh, so I didn't have that connection. I mean, I got the main point - and it was very poignant for me - that her mother just didn't have love to give and Alison figured out early that the best thing she could do was to not need anything. That's pretty much my relationship with my mother, so it meant a lot to me, but in some ways it was a simpler and less interesting story. ( )
  piemouth | Jun 15, 2014 |
Bechdel's "Fun House" was a game changer for me in terms of weighty graphic novels. "Are You My Mother?" follows up with Bechdel and her relationship with her mother instead of her father. However, the threads feel bigger and more numerous. There's not a lot of follow-through and it's hard to keep track of time and place. Bechdel's voice is charming enough (and the situation sufficiently relatable) that it's a pleasant read - albeit a problematic one. ( )
  marthaearly | Jun 6, 2014 |
This was a more difficult read than Fun Home--it includes a lot more psychology jargon and references than I was prepared for. But it's still Alison Bechdel and still very good. Honestly though, her books are so deeply personal I feel like a voyeur. I wish I could give half stars--it deserves more than 3, but I don't feel quite enthusiastic enough about it to give 4. ( )
  jaelikesbooks | Jan 18, 2014 |
Are You My Mother? is not, if you ask me, about Bechdel's mother. It is mostly about Bechdel, her creative demons, her childhood, her relationships with lovers and, yes, therapists. Bechdel writes well and the whole book is drawn beautifully with a lot of attention to detail. Panels flow well and they tell a story in physical space as well as in several moments in time. She often has a narration going on as she is having a conversation with someone while, say, she is driving somewhere. The work is meticulous and polished. Her mom calls the book a meta-book, which is very apt. Most of the book concerns itself with psychoanalysis and psychology. Freud, Jung, Winnicott, and Virginia Woolf dominate the text. Beyond that there is a personal life that is very much like most personal lives: love, hate, deceit, anxiety, regret, brilliance, career woes, insecurities, money problems, gender issues... There are some very funny moments, but the overall feel of the book is anxious and slightly claustrophobic. Bechdel does a very good job in telling the story and using her art to break down, almost crystallize, certain feelings and moments.

All in all, Are You My Mother? is an intellectual delight to read with some great art. It is also an act of bravery and self-indulgence. I do not recommend it to people who cannot multitask, who have short attention span, or who do not like to read about lofty complex psychological concepts. Highly recommended for intellectuals, moms, dads, and artists ("the humanities people," as I like to call them!) ( )
  bluepigeon | Dec 15, 2013 |
I have a sneaking suspicion that the 3 stars says something about my mother/daughter relationship with my mother rather than this. It's sa look at Alison and her mother and the ups and downs of their relatioships with each other, including the writing of the previous book, Fun Home. It also includes some of her therapy sessions and relationships. It would probably appeal to people who enjoy reading about navel-gazing, I don't happen to be one. ( )
  wyvernfriend | Dec 5, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 45 (next | show all)
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Epigraph
"For nothing was simply one thing." ~ Virginia Woolf
Dedication
For my mother, who knows who she is.
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While engaged in some sort of home-improvement project, I inadvertently block my exit from a dank cellar.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0618982507, Hardcover)

From the best-selling author of Fun Home, Time magazine’s No. 1 Book of the Year, a brilliantly told graphic memoir of Alison Bechdel becoming the artist her mother wanted to be.

Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home was a pop culture and literary phenomenon. Now, a second thrilling tale of filial sleuthery, this time about her mother: voracious reader, music lover, passionate amateur actor. Also a woman, unhappily married to a closeted gay man, whose artistic aspirations simmered under the surface of Bechdel's childhood . . . and who stopped touching or kissing her daughter good night, forever, when she was seven. Poignantly, hilariously, Bechdel embarks on a quest for answers concerning the mother-daughter gulf. It's a richly layered search that leads readers from the fascinating life and work of the iconic twentieth-century psychoanalyst Donald Winnicott, to one explosively illuminating Dr. Seuss illustration, to Bechdel’s own (serially monogamous) adult love life. And, finally, back to Mother—to a truce, fragile and real-time, that will move and astonish all adult children of gifted mothers.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:28:54 -0400)

Alison Bechdels Fun Home was a pop culture and literary phenomenon. Now, a second thrilling tale of filial sleuthery, this time about her mother: voracious reader, music lover, passionate amateur actor. Also a woman, unhappily married to a closeted gay man, whose artistic aspirations simmered under the surface of Bechdel's childhood . . . and who stopped touching or kissing her daughter good night, forever, when she was seven. Poignantly, hilariously, Bechdel embarks on a quest for answers concerning the mother-daughter gulf. It's a richly layered search that leads readers from the fascinating life and work of the iconic twentieth-century psychoanalyst Donald Winnicott, to one explosively illuminating Dr. Seuss illustration, to Bechdels own (serially monogamous) adult love life. And, finally, back to Motherto a truce, fragile and real-time, that will move and astonish all adult children of gifted mothers.… (more)

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