I've retrieved a book review that I did for Mothers & More for their "Mothers at Work" blog campaign in 2005. Since you can't access it anymore through regular avenues, I didn't think they'd mind if I put it on my personal blog, so all of my book review links work.
It Really Is All About Time...
….according to Miriam Peskowitz in The Truth Behind the Mommy Wars: Who Decides What Makes a Good Mother?
What a great book. Here’s my review from my personal book log:
A really good, thoughtful, well-written book. I don’t know why it hasn’t been reviewed anywhere but a couple of blogs, when Judith Warner’s book (which I haven’t read yet, so no comparisons) is all over the place.
Peskowitz looks at SAH moms, moms who work PT, and WOH moms, and every permutation of work/childcare and “sequencing” you can imagine. She examines the stereotypes, politcal manipulation, media & marketing, and what women (and some men) really do, and how women’s “personal choices” (as in “opting out”) may actually be more being “squeezed” by culture, companies, and just the time crunch that being a parent entails. She looks at feminism’s role in this and in motherhood.
This book was a huge breath of common sense. Peskowitz doesn’t rant, she doesn’t tell gut-wrenching personal stories (or especially hilarious ones), and she doesn’t over-simplify the issues. Maybe that’s why it hasn’t been a big hit? It’s too reasonable? I dunno.
One thing lacking: an index. There are good footnotes, and you can tell that her statements are backed up by fact (and you can check the facts yourself via the footnotes), but an index would help you when you think, hmm, what did she say about FMLA (the Family Medical Leave Act)? What chapter was that in again?
Here’s one of my favorite quotes: “With the kids interrupting and needing attention, who can finish a setence, let along organize a piece of a revolution?” (p. 173).
I don't even feel the need to change anything I wrote over four years ago! The book is still a breath of fresh air.