Planting Dandelions: Field Notes from a Semi-Domesticated Life

Kyran Pittman. Riverhead, $25.95 (256p) ISBN 978-1-59448-800-9
Pittman's voice is like that of a close girlfriend: warm, funny, conspiratorial, and up for talking about anything. Pittman, a Good Housekeeping contributor, shares 18 essays about being a wife and mother (of three boys) who alternately dives into and shrinks back from those roles. She skillfully and honestly explores "the possibility of settling down without settling for," mixing funny anecdotes with thoughtful musings, plus plenty of looks back at the woman she was and has become, for better or worse. A recurring theme: she repeatedly returns to the demise of her first marriage and writes of her own surprise at her 13 years of monogamy with her second husband (for whom she left the first). While she writes of that time with regret and some sympathy, she also calls herself an "adulterous whore"; it's unclear whether she has—or will ever—forgive herself. Standout essays include "Penis Ennui," about what it's like to be the lone female in her household, and "Me, the People," in which she winningly recounts her physical and emotional journey from Newfoundland native to American citizen. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 03/14/2011
Release date: 04/01/2011
Paperback - 244 pages - 978-1-59448-562-6
Open Ebook - 256 pages - 978-1-101-51418-4
Open Ebook - 256 pages - 978-1-101-50478-9
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