Queen for a Day: A Novel in Stories (MP3 CD)
With "intelligence and sympathy," this compassionate and darkly humorous debut tells the stories of mothers of children with disabilities (Alison Lurie, Pulitzer Prize-winning author).
After Mimi Slavitt's three-year-old son, Danny, is diagnosed with autism, she finds herself in a world nearly as isolating as her son's. It is a position she shares only with mothers like herself, women chosen against their will for lives of sacrifice and martyrdom. Searching for miracles, begging for the help of heartless bureaucracies while arranging every minute of every day for children who can never be left alone, they exist in a state of perpetual crisis, normal life always just out of reach.
In chapters told from Mimi's point of view and theirs, these women emerge as conflicted, complex individuals, totally unsuited for sainthood, often dreaming of the day they can just walk away. Taking its title from the 1950s reality TV show in which the contestants - housewives living lives filled with pain and suffering - competed with one another for deluxe refrigerators and sets of stainless steel silverware, Queen for a Day portrays a group of imperfect women coping under enormous pressure.
In her impressive debut, Rosaler tells their stories in ironic, precise, and vivid prose, with humor and insight born of firsthand experience, and offers readers "the gut-heaving, throat-choking, darkly comic truth--about parenthood, marriage, love, rage, and hard-won survival" (Eileen Pollack, author of The Bible of Dirty Jokes).