The Mothers’ Group by Fiona Higgins
Allen & Unwin, 2012, 304 pages
Found on the Adult Fiction shelves under HIGGINS
Plot Summary : An unthinkably shocking event sends shockwaves through a tight-knit mother’s group, testing their bonds and revealing closely-held secrets that threaten to shatter their lives in an explosive, enthralling debut novel about motherhood, friendship and love.
‘All those things no one ever tells you about motherhood. It’s like secret mothers’ business. Lots of my friends had babies before me, but not one of them ever told me it would be this hard…It’s like a code of silence.’
The Mothers’ Group tells the story of six very different women who agree to regularly meet soon after the births of their babies.
Set during the first crucial year of their babies’ lives, The Mothers’ Group tracks the women’s individual journeys-and the group’s collective one-as they navigate birth and motherhood as well as the shifting ground of their relationships with their partners.
Each woman strives in her own way to become the mother she wants to be, and finds herself becoming increasingly reliant on the friendship and support of the members of the mothers’ group. Until one day an unthinkably shocking event changes everything, testing their bonds and revealing closely held secrets that threaten to shatter their lives.
The Mothers’ Group is an unflinching and compelling portrait of the modern family in all its complexity and intensity: love, sex and marriage and all the joys and tensions of raising children in an increasingly complicated world. Moving, provocative, tender and utterly gripping, The Mothers’ Group will draw you in and never let you go. (Source : Allen & Unwin)
Review : Set in the Northern Beaches suburbs of Sydney, The Mothers’ Group by Fiona Higgins, introduces a disparate group of women who, despite their differences in background, lifestyle and circumstances, bond during their regular Mothers’ Group meetings. This novel unfolds in alternating chapters, using the third person point of view, allowing each woman to share their lives. Higgins skillfully develops believable characters to whom the reader can relate. The emphasis of the novel however is on the burgeoning relationships between the women as their friendships develop from tentative interaction to a solidly supportive network.
The Mothers’ Group is an impressive fiction debut from Australian author Fiona Higgins. An insightful portrayal of first time parenthood, relationships and friendships this novel makes for compelling reading.
Reviewed by : Carolyn