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The Rest of Us

Dispatches from the Mother Ship

The Rest of Us by Jacquelyn Mitchard
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For ten years of Sunday mornings, readers of Jacquelyn Mitchard’s newspaper column, “The Rest of Us,” have been calling their mothers, boyfriends, and sisters to say, “See? That’s exactly what I meant!” Mitchard’s clear-eyed takes on everyday life in process are described over and over as “a letter from home,” as “the best friend I can really count on,” as “the kind of story you tell at the coffee machine—and keep under your pillow.”

Jacquelyn Mitchard reaches for heart and mind simultaneously, with both wit and nostalgia but never with sentimentality. Whether writing of gun laws and garage sales, the loneliness of the long-haul single mother, fear of gardening, or the late great American game of baseball, Mitchard stresses the personal stake each of us has in the stand-up drama of daily life. The single mother of five children, she shares her own family’s dramas and epiphanies—her own mother’s tradition of optimism based on nothing, the early death of her husband, the adoption of her baby daughter, as well as the great wheeling issues that confound Americans every day.
Penguin Publishing Group; March 1999
272 pages; ISBN 9781101199534
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Title: The Rest of Us
Author: Jacquelyn Mitchard