I’m sure you’ve seen The Mothers by Brit Bennett just about everywhere these last few months. I know I have. All reviews and posts about The Mothers was nothing shy of glowing. Which made me a grow a bit skeptical. But I reluctantly added it to my ever expanding reading list, and I’m so glad I did. And just in time for Mothers Day too! (Well, kind of).
It’s tough to blog about this book without giving away too many spoilers. I’ll do the best I can to summarize the book without ruining it for you….
THE MOTHERS BY BRIT BENNETT
We meet Nadia, Luke, and Aubrey on the brink of graduating high school, the setting is Southern California. Each of the three main characters is currently trying to muddle through a major turning point, that will forever change the course of their young lives:
Nadia’s mother has just committed suicide, she accepted a full ride to a university in Michigan, she can’t wait to leave. Though this conflicts her, as her mother never had the opportunity to go to college.
Luke is the son of the communities pastor. Luke has just lost his football scholarship due to a severe injury that has left him with a limp, he is now serving tables while watching all of his friends continue on with university.
Aubrey recently packed up, and moved across the country to live with her older sister. Aubrey left to get away from her mother and her sexually abusive stepfather.
Due to a series of circumstances, Aubrey and Nadia begin a summer job at the church, for the pastors wife (read: Luke’s mother). The two girls are both in their own pain, and envious of the other (in the way teenage girls are), yet strike up a much needed friendship.
Luke and Nadia begin a secret relationship. There is an accidental pregnancy, an abortion, and a broken relationship due to the aftermath. Nadia moves across the country for school, leaving Luke in his continued state of feeling lost in life.
We follow Luke, Nadia, and Aubrey for the next six or seven years, watching them grow, change, and evolve. The complicated scars of the past constantly haunting them. It’s written so beautifully.
Some years later, Aubrey and Luke begin dating. Though, Aubrey was kept completely in the dark about the abortion, and in fact, she had no clue that her new boyfriends first love was with her best friend, Nadia. Which make things… complicated, when Nadia returns home to take care of her ailing father.
And that’s all I’m going to say without spoiling anything!
WHY I LOVED IT
There is a lot to love about Nadia, Luke, and Aubrey. Each character is so complex, and Bennett does such a beautiful job of weaving together layers of deep sorrow and devastation. Which allows you to truly understand each ones actions, whether good or bad.
In between chapters, we hear from the mothers who are a really close knitted group of women, who attend Luke’s father’s church. They are known as the ‘church mothers,’ and their chapters are told in the form of gossip, talking about Aubrey Evans and Nadia Turner, from the mothers point of view.
It’s a story about so much: friendship, family, love, loss, pain, perseverance, complicated relationships, betrayal… I loved everything about Nadia and Aubrey’s friendship, Luke’s relationship with each woman, and the complicated understanding each woman has / had with her own mother. Oh, it warmed my heart.
Verdict: READ IT!