Customer Reviews


 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars when counter-transference gets out of hand - a cautionary tale
I loved Music for Torching and was fascinated to find out that Homes had written a whole novel about Claire Roth, a psychotherapist, who has a walk on bit in it. As a therapist In a Country of Mothers is interesting as it looks at boundaries, fantasy and reality within, and in this case, outside of the therapy room. It is a story in which the therapist's counter...
Published on 7 Feb. 2011 by Lucinda Stern

versus
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Average compared with other books by AM Homes
I felt a bit disappointed after reading 'This book will save our life'. 'In a country of mothers' is a worthwhile read, but overall it is not as gripping as previous books I have read by this author. An average read.

I would however definitely recommend 'This book will save your life' by the same author as a throroughly enjoyable read.
Published on 23 May 2007 by Fiona Nagle


‹ Previous | 1 2 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars when counter-transference gets out of hand - a cautionary tale, 7 Feb. 2011
By 
Lucinda Stern (Bristol, England) - See all my reviews
I loved Music for Torching and was fascinated to find out that Homes had written a whole novel about Claire Roth, a psychotherapist, who has a walk on bit in it. As a therapist In a Country of Mothers is interesting as it looks at boundaries, fantasy and reality within, and in this case, outside of the therapy room. It is a story in which the therapist's counter transference toward her client starts to become reality and therefore be acted out. The therapist, who starts out as the reliable character becomes less reliable, and at times quite deranged. Like Homes' other novels the madness of the suburban characters is beneath the surface and behind closed doors, seen by the reader, but not always by the other characters. We know of Claire's increasing obsession with her patient/long lost daughter Jody, as does Jody, but Claire's family, and certainly her other patients remain unaware. Parts of the book were over-dramatic for me. As a therapist I found myself rather horrified at Claire, but also fascinated by her situation.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Psycho therapist., 15 July 2013
By 
Sue Kichenside - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: In a Country of Mothers (Paperback)
24-year old Jody jeopardises a promising career because of her obsession with the fact that she is adopted. Her new therapist, Claire, has never recovered from giving up her baby daughter in an illicit adoption and becomes obsessed with the idea that Jody is her daughter. As a highly experienced professional, Claire is well aware of the importance of maintaining boundaries in the therapeutic relationship but when it comes to Jody, she persists in crossing them. What could possibly go wrong?

As a huge A M Homes fan, I found it interesting to come to this book after reading her prize-winning May We Be Forgiven. In a Country of Mothers was first published in 1993 and this early novel betrays some related shortcomings as well as revealing signs of the great writer she has since become; no doubt it also reflects the author's issues with her own adoption. As other reviewers have remarked, this book makes for a discomforting read and, ultimately, an unsatisfying one. It would be fascinating to see what Homes would do with this novel if she was writing it all over again today.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Average compared with other books by AM Homes, 23 May 2007
By 
Fiona Nagle (Ireland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I felt a bit disappointed after reading 'This book will save our life'. 'In a country of mothers' is a worthwhile read, but overall it is not as gripping as previous books I have read by this author. An average read.

I would however definitely recommend 'This book will save your life' by the same author as a throroughly enjoyable read.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3.0 out of 5 stars Struggling mothers, 5 Mar. 2015
By 
reader 451 - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: In a Country of Mothers (Paperback)
Jody has just begun on a job in cinema and left home. Ever conscious that she was an adopted child, however, she has adjustment problems and, after moving to New York, she visits a therapist. As it turns out, her new shrink Claire abandoned a little girl of hers, through an illegal adoption process, years before as a teenager. Claire now has a family: a husband and two boys, but she starts to obsess over Jody, convinced she is her lost daughter. And as Jody, unaware of Claire's secret, gets drawn ever more tightly into her therapist's private circle, things start to become distinctly unhealthy. A.M Homes begins well from this interesting premise, but her novel tends to become drawn out as the plot progresses. The characterisation is reasonably good, moreover, but Jody's dependence on Claire could have been better substantiated. Indeed, in its last pages, the book tends to fail on the show-don't-tell criteria, and to lack conviction. The result is that the ending, otherwise clever, falls somewhat flat. In a Country of Mothers, from an intriguing exploration of mother-daughter relationships in modern America, ends up flailing and flagging somewhat, making the novel's second half unworthy of the first.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3.0 out of 5 stars Far fetched, 11 Nov. 2012
By 
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Perhaps this is more believable if you're American and live in a world where regular therapy is normal but I found this very unbelievable. I wasn't sure why Jody needed therapy in the first place, she just sounded as though she needed a friend to chat to. Claire as a therapist was totally unbelievable, she had minimal self awareness and was totally self centred, especially where her family were concerned.
I found it hard to really care what happened to either of them.
Jeanette Winterson recommended her writing and I love most of her books so I'll give another book a go but this one started well then got silly. Maybe I should avoid books with the term "psychological thriller" in the bumf as it usually means "people going a bit nuts but without the action and interest of a real thriller".
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars interesting and enjoyable treatment of difficult themes, 26 April 2015
This review is from: In a Country of Mothers (Paperback)
Interesting theme of therapist neediness against patient's, and the intensity of that initial connection representing something ultimately unhelpful and obscuring for both. This book may represent some of the author's own struggles, as The Mistress Daughter is about the author's own adoption. Overall, I found the story raced through fascinating subjects as it did with 'this book could save your life'. But at some points it was disjointed and I felt it didn't resolve some conflicts sufficiently for me. However I liked the premise of the flawed therapist and impact of her needs and I enjoyed Homes' humour in her writing too.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An ailment compounded by wealth and privilege, 5 Oct. 2009
By 
Eileen Shaw "Kokoschka's_cat" (Leeds, England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
Jody is a bright, articulate, talented young film-maker and as the novel opens she is working for a film producer helping a much revered but rather repulsive director on his latest opus. She wants to be a director herself and has signed up for film school at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). She was adopted and her relationship with her adoptee mother is very needy. She is, in common with many middle class Americans, in therapy - with a new therapist, Claire. Claire is married with two children and is obsessed by the daughter she put up for adoption when she was a teenager. The book centres on Jody and Claire's relationship which gradually becomes more and more combative, not to say sinister.

This novel made me wonder what it is that American women really want from their lives. The two women in the novel have versions of what might be termed `everything', but there are so many aspects of their lives that they seem compelled to reinforce with negativity - Claire has two beautiful children, but the eldest isn't achieving at school and Claire blames herself; Jody is accepted into film school but it means a dreaded journey (she is afraid of flying - get a Greyhound bus for god's sake!). Insecurities abound for these women yet they have money, houses, great social lives, people who love them (Claire's husband is a paragon, considerate, sexy, loving, great with the kids - perfection - come on Claire, wake up!).

When Claire begins to imagine that she is Jody's real mother and evidence to the contrary is ignored, we begin to feel distinctly uneasy about her future.

Homes has created a mixture made up of a relationship novel and a psychological thriller with this highly original book. The writing is witty, insightful and makes for an increasingly intriguing read, though sometimes my patience was exhausted by the almost perverse pessimism of the two main protagonists' thinking. On reflection, however, it felt accurate about the continued waning of the American Dream and as if the difficulties encountered were symptoms of an ailment compounded by wealth and privilege.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars all Shrink's are mad!, 20 Mar. 2013
By 
MISTERWINT (Wakefield, UK) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I was of that opinion before I read the book. The third AM Homes book I read and I wasn't disappointed. Quite a twisted, off the wall tale, very strong characters. It left me feeling uncomfortably embarrassed because I could see the car-crash unfolding in their professional relationship.

I say very little about the plot because I don't like to ruin it for others.

AM Homes always writes something quite different from the norm, stuff to stir emotions and make you think out of the box.

Sadly I found a number of typos in this Kindle edition.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars A Good Read, 2 Nov. 2013
By 
Jeanette Levin "janlevin" (N. London, U.K.) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I am not going to tell you about the story, some of my fellow reviewers may have already spoiled it by doing just that! Apologies to those who like to know the whole story - I do not!
I thought this book was quite gripping and exciting. The therapists' behaviour was quite outrageous - all that we are taught not to do. Having said that, I thought it was most helpful to discover just how damaging it can be when therapists start acting outside the boundaries. A good lesson to all, including myself!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars Riveting scenario, 7 May 2015
By 
BM Ford "Lapta Fan" (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: In a Country of Mothers (Paperback)
I have bought another copy for my daughter who is a psychologist/counsellor for her birthday.
It's riveting, but far-fetched that she would invite a client into her family and bond so closely.... She would be struck off in UK.
I listened to the audio book and must admit I find American voices so over-enthusiastic and annoying, I'd rather have read it myself.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

In a Country of Mothers
In a Country of Mothers by A. M. Homes (Paperback - 4 April 2013)
£8.99
In stock
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews