The Blue Jay's Dance: A Birth Year

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9780060171322: The Blue Jay's Dance: A Birth Year

An exhilarating and enchanting meditation on becoming a mother from one of America’s most acclaimed writers, and winner of the National Book Award for Fiction, 2012.

‘She is a winter-spring baby, and all day there is just her, me, snow and the birds outside.’

A mother for all seasons, Erdrich tracks the end of her pregnancy into the dazzling light of childbirth and beyond into her baby’s infancy, keeping a weather-eye on Nature outside her window and inside her body, gauging its lessons and constraints. She spills over with the intense feeling a baby carries into being as its gift to its mother.

But her book is no mystical trip; Erdrich is umbilically attached to the earth, and to common sense. All prospective and seasoned parents will cherish her report from the frontline, for she never lectures, she simply strives to record exactly – in language both supple and ripe. Moving and memorable, neither handbook nor tract, here, for perhaps the first time, is mothering converted into writing without fakery.

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Review:

‘The language in this book is stunning, elastic, often full of silence ... Erdrich is forthright and tough-minded in her intentions, generous in her speculations and courageous in her vulnerability before her readers. 'The Blue Jay’s Dance' is a book that breaks ground.’ Boston Globe

‘A refreshing breath of air for new parents struggling to make sense of the chaos into which they’ve been thrown ... an astonishingly accurate and sensuous evocation of an indescribable experience. For ever more mothers, the often painful decision to work is an emotional as well as a financial necessity, a blue jay’s dance. In this joyful yet unsentimental book, Erdrich beautifully captures the daunting trials and immense rewards of bringing a child into this world.’ Miami Herald

From the Back Cover:

Louise Erdrich's first major work of nonfiction, The Blue Jay's Dance, brilliantly and poignantly examines the joys and frustrations, the compromises and insights, and the difficult struggles and profound emotional satisfactions the acclaimed author experienced in the course of one twelve-month period--from a winter pregnancy through a spring and summer of new motherhood to her return to writing in the fall. In exquisitely lyrical prose, Erdrich illuminates afresh the large and small events that every parent will recognize and appreciate.

"Moving, memorable. . . . A book that breaks ground."--Boston Sunday Globe

"Pregnancy, birth, and caring for an infant inspire Erdrich's reflections on being a woman, a mother, and a writer. . . . [She] transforms the mundane into a paean to the mystery and wonder of the creative force, and a celebration of family, nature, and memory."--People

"What Erdrich does so masterfully is tie together all the strings of her life. . . . All these strings tie her to the rest of us."--Detroit Free Press

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Louise Erdrich
Published by Harpercollins (1995)
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