Book Mini-Review: Glitter and Glue by Kelly Corrigan
“Raising people is not some lark. It’s serious work with serious repercussions. It’s air-traffic control. You can’t step out for a minute; you can barely pause to scratch your ankle.”
After I read Kelly Corrigan’s Tell Me More in May, I requested her previous memoir, Glitter and Glue, from Libby through my library. I finally got around to reading it, and like Tell Me More, it was a quick read but really packs a punch. Corrigan explores the relationship between her mother and herself, specifically focusing on the time when she was a nanny for a family in Australia after college. The family had recently lost their mother to cancer, and Kelly, as a twenty-four year old, iss for the first time thinking about motherhood and parenting. Kelly and her mother had a typical mother-daughter relationship while she was a teenager and in college; they just didn’t understand each other, but once Kelly is faced with two young, motherless children, she begins to understand her mother and her choices.
In Tell Me More, her father has died, and she reminisces about their relationship and how amazing and full of life Greenie was. Even in that book, she talks about how different her mother and father were. I’m sure this is typical for many families, but in the Corrigan family, her mother was the one who made sure everything ran smoothly and the kids survived, while her dad would come in from work and be the fun parent. As her mother used to tell her, “Your father’s the glitter but I’m the glue.” As Kelly spends a year with the Tanner family, she begins to realize how much her mother shaped her life and choices, even following the Mary Corrigan method of parenting.
Most of Glitter and Glue is about Kelly’s year in Australia with the Tanner family, but the second part is about her return home to America. Once she and her husband, Edward, have their two daughters, she finds herself mothering her two girls much like her mom mothered her. As a soon-to-be mom of a daughter myself, I found this whole book fascinating, and it made me reflect on my own relationship with my mother. We have a great relationship and have always been close, but reading Glitter and Glue made me think about how I will mother my own daughter. I’m sure I will subconsciously channel my own mother, and I am more than okay with that.
If you are looking for a quick memoir this summer, I cannot recommend Kelly Corrigan enough. I still have her first two books to read, but I will be reading them soon. This was a perfect book to read over the 4th of July holiday, and also very timely for me as I’m less than two months away from welcoming our baby girl into the world. I really enjoyed Glitter and Glue and give it 4 stars.
What other memoirs have you enjoyed this summer?