Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for My Mother’s Daughter, by Ann O’Loughlin!
I realised recently that every single one of the books I’ve reviewed since I started my blog have been by women! What better way to continue this fortuitous trend, than with a book all about women, and what it means for women to fulfil roles of mother, daughter, role model, friend, confidante.
My Mother’s Daughter tells the incredible story of two mothers and two daughters, whose lives are completely changed forever. When the novel begins, both families are already facing difficult times. In County Wicklow in Ireland, Margo and her daughter Elsie are grieving the terrible loss of Conor, husband and father, who was a great comfort and rock to their family. Across the ocean in Ohio, United States, Cassie is going through a messy divorce from self-centred Charles, made all the more infuriating and perplexing when Charles requests a paternity test for their daughter Tilly.
So, things are already pretty turbulent when the book begins! From there, O’Loughlin takes us on a roller-coaster of a journey, to explore some very deep and emotional themes: resilience, immense grief, divorce, loss, illness, fear. Just when I thought things had become complicated enough, O’Loughlin would pull the rug from under our feet again with another plot development.
For me, the heart of this book is in its female characters – we get to know both the mothers Margo and Cassie, and daughters Elsie and Tilly. Their stories tenderly expose the close bond that exists between mothers and daughters – and particularly what it means to be a mother (at times I wished we heard more directly from the daughters, Elise and Tilly). I also loved the female friendships that develop across different generations – the representation of that wonderful female support network, where tough advice can be plainly spoken, but with the most compassionate intentions. Ida and Becca were two interesting supporting characters, both are slightly older women who provide comfort and assistance to the two families. Their temperaments are completely different to each other, but both are formidable women in their own ways!
My Mother’s Daughter is a compassionate and emotive book. Many thanks to Tracy Fenton at Compulsive Readers for inviting me to participate in this tour and to Alex Layt at Orion Fiction for sending me a copy to review.
Look out for further reviews by other the bloggers on this tour: