I liked this book. I liked this book more than I expected too. I don’t think that I had been “woowed” by a book lately and so it was a nice feeling.
As the title suggests, it is a memoir. It tell about a time in the author’s life when she became a nanny for a family in Australia. She was hired as a nanny because the wife/mother of the family had just died and the husband needed help caring for his two children. The story of Kelly being a nanny is wrapped inside her own story from several years later when she is sick and needs her mother.
As literature and life will tell us, mother/daughter relationships can be hard. Kelly and her mother went through a time when they were in conflict. Well, perhaps Kelly didn’t understand her mom. It is interesting to see how she came around and then could understand so much. It could make every mother/daughter hope that it could work out for them.
This may sound odd but one of my favorite things about the book is the title. Sometimes you can read a book and not really see the significance of the title. You might pick it up in the story but the significance eludes you. (An “Okay, yea…” moment) Kelly’s father is Mr. Positive. He thinks every day is full of sunshine and as his child, you are a fantastic person. He was the easy parent to like. He was exuberant and supportive. Kelly’s mother was the realist and what could be termed “the bad cop”. She had to enforce rules and dole out punishments. At one point, Kelly’s mother describes their relationship as “He is the glitter and I am the glue.” When you read it in the story, it perfectly describes the situation.
Throughout Kelly’s time in Australia as a nanny, she hears her mother’s voice in her head. For example, whenever the children are referred to as “kids”, the inner voice would say something like, “Kids are goats. Those are children.” I not only appreciated Kelly’s mother’s voice but I thought that it was really done well in the story. The voice of Kelly’s mom fit right in and improved the story.
Kelly found out and shows us in the story that while glitter is wonderful that sometimes the glue is more of what you need in your life.
If you are interested in hearing Kelly speak to a group about parenthood and “the Great Adventure” I have include a video for your pleasure.
Thanks for reading!