Michelle Malonzo

Michelle Malonzo, book buyer at Changing Hands

PHOENIX (3TV/CBS5) -- Michelle Malonzo is the book buyer for Changing Hands and absolutely the BEST person to ask for a recommendation! She’s shared this list ahead of Mother’s Day. If you are looking for a meaningful read or a gift idea, she's got you covered.

And don’t forget, we’ll be at Olivia’s Book Club will be meeting from Changing Hands in Phoenix this Thursday, April 25 at 6 p.m. for Enemies in Love.

Join us in person or on Facebook!

Michelle Malonzo, buyer for Changing Hands Bookstore: 

Mother's Day is quickly approaching. And full disclosure, I am not a mother. But my huge appreciation, respect and admiration for motherhood runs deep. My mother and my friends whom I’ve seen become mothers have greatly affected my life.

On May 12, let’s celebrate all mothers: those who are mothers, those who want to be mothers, those with absent mothers, those unable to be mothers and those who stumble into motherhood accidentally. Here are some recent books that speak to the many ways of experiencing motherhood.

JOY ENOUGH by Sarah McColl: “I loved my mother and then she died. Is that a story?” And so begins, essayist Sarah McColl’s memoir about the greatest love of her life: her mother. This is a slim but powerful read about the deep love she has for her mother while also delving deep into grief, desire and the happiness found in everyday pleasures. It’s a bit of a lighter read than Meghan O’Rourke’s devastating memoir The Long Goodbye but it’s still a heartbreaker. You ache for McColl’s loss but the book is also a celebration of her mother’s life and the joy she left behind.

AND NOW WE HAVE EVERYTHING: On Motherhood Before I Was Ready by Meghan O’Connell: When O’Connell accidentally got pregnant, she researched everything there was about pregnancy and motherhood - only to discover none of it prepared her for the physical and emotional toll that would beset her. O’Connell writes with wit and brute honesty about the near-manic ups and downs of new motherhood.  For any woman who read all the books and thinks to herself: why is everything going wrong? O’Connell’s memoir is here to tell you, you’re not alone.

BROWN WHITE BLACK: An American Family at the Intersection of Race, Gender, Sexuality, and Religion by Nishta J. Mehra: Nishta Mehra is first generation Indian-American, a lesbian married to a white woman and together they adopted a black son. Their family - mixed-race and same-sex - is considered an abomination by many: and it’s devastating to read the many instances in which she is asked to legitimize her existence and that of her family. Her prose is sharp and the stories cut deep. But Mehra implores us to move toward a more inclusive definition of family, to move beyond gender and racial boundaries, and to expand our views of what a family looks like. Mehra lives with her family in Phoenix. She’ll be at Changing Hands - Phoenix, May 16 at 7 p.m. for a talk and signing.

THINGS THAT HELPED: On Postpartum Depression by Jessica Friedman: With tenderness and honesty, Jessica Friedman writes about her struggles with postpartum depression after the birth of her son. Structured as a series of essays, Friedman recounts all “the things that helped” her cope with the deep depression and anxiety that befell her after giving birth. She discusses motherhood, art and creativity, female bodies, mental health and privilege with acuity. The stigma, secrets and lies surrounding postpartum depression prevent many women from telling their stories and seeking medical help. Friedman’s memoir adds to the numerous narratives being unearthed about the emotional and mental trauma of birth; and hopefully in reading books like Friedman’s more women will feel less ashamed to tell their stories too.

To purchase, visit Changing Hands Bookstore

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