Family is Complicated

mothers tell your daughtersFor some the word mother is comfort. For some it is fear. For some it is heartbreak. For many of us it is all of those things at the same time and then some. In this searing collection of short stories, Bonnie Jo Campbell lets us into the lives of mothers, daughters, grandparents, sisters, husbands, kids and all the people who make up our modern families who are trying to survive as best they can. Taking an unflinching view at post-industrial America, Mothers, Tell Your Daughters is a collection of voices that will stay with you long after the story is over.

From the genius construction of the short story, “Playhouse”, a story about more than just the tiny house they are building within an house, a story of the things that pierce us, change us, and aren’t easily excised, to the title story “Mothers, Tell Your Daughters”, in which a mother with dementia is unable to tell her daughter the things that are still vivid and clear in her mind, but her body will not divulge, families come alive in startling clarity that will touch deep chords in those of us with families that are never simple, and with whom we are still connected, even when we leave.

Review by the New York Times

About Bonnie Jo Campbell

Other books and stories by Campbell

Buy Indie!


Published by

Christine Thomas Alderman

Christine Thomas Alderman is a writer and educator working in Texas. She holds a graduate degree from Harvard University. Her work was long-listed for the Bath Flash Fiction Award and included in their anthology: To Carry Her Home. She won the Cynthia Leitich Smith mentorship from the Austin Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. Find her at

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