No Picnic

 The relationships between daughters and their mothers provide fascinating, fertile ground for exploration. Mothers in books are sitting ducks, really, and these three new Young Adult books take aim. One mother is a cavalier, emotionally blackmailing bank robber; another is adored, but nosy and old-fashioned; while the third, obsessed with organic food, is diagnosed with cancer. In All This Could End (Text, $19.99 pb, 288 pp, 9781921758447), Steph Bowe challenges the controlling mother trope by portraying one who robs banks. Antonella Preto treads the complex terrain between an Italian migrant mother and her first-generation Australian daughter in The Mimosa Tree (Fremantle Press, $19.99 pb, 376 pp, 9781922089199), while the prospect of losing one’s mother encourages sweet soul-searching in Aimee Said’s new novel Freia Lockhart’s Summer of Awful (Walker Books, $16.95 pb, 288 pp, 9781921977800).If being a mother is tough, being a daughter is no picnic.

Read the rest of this article by purchasing a subscription to ABR Online, or subscribe to the print edition to receive access to ABR Online free of charge.

If you are a single issue subscriber you will need to upgrade your subscription to view back issues.

If you are already subscribed, click here to log in.

Published in September 2013 no. 354

Leave a comment

Please note that all comments must be approved by ABR and comply with our Terms & Conditions.

NB: If you are an ABR Online subscriber or contributor, you will need to login to ABR Online in order to post a comment. If you have forgotten your login details, or if you receive an error message when trying to submit your comment, please email your comment (and the name of the article to which it relates) to We will review your comment and, subject to approval, we will post it under your name.