TBR: Mother on Fire
This week’s book is Mother on Fire: A True Motherf#%&ing Story about Parenting, by Sandra Tsing Loh. I had high hopes for this book, as I generally enjoy Loh’s essays in The Atlantic, in particular those about how she sent her kids to public school in Los Angeles and the world didn’t collapse.
Unfortunately, Loh’s decision to send her kids to public school is the conclusion of this book, not the beginning. Most of the book is an extended meditation on how terribly unfair it is that two artists don’t earn enough to send their kids to fancy private schools. I can’t say I’m terribly sympathetic.
The book is based on her one-woman show, and it does have some funny moments. My favorite was her discussion of how she suddenly became famous when she was fired from public radio for cursing on the air. But it’s not a good sign when, of the four humorous quotes on the back of the jacket, three of them show up in the first chapter. And making fun of the pretentiousness of ultra-expensive liberal private schools is shooting fish in a barrel.