All My Mothers and Fathers: A Memoir

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9780060933920: All My Mothers and Fathers: A Memoir

Shortly after his mother dies of breast cancer when he is ten years old, Michael Blumenthal discovers that she was not his biological mother, and that his aunt and uncle, immigrant chicken farmers living in Vineland, New Jersey, are really his parents.

As fate would have it, his adoptive father, a German-Jewish refugee raised by a loveless and embittered stepmother after his own mother died in childbirth, has inflicted on his stepson a fate uncannily -- and terrifyingly -- similar to his own: having first adopted Michael, in part, to help his dying wife, he then imposes on him the same sort of penurious and loveless stepmother whom he himself had had to survive.

With these revelations, the "mysteries" that seem to have permeated Michael's childhood are laid bare, triggering a quest for belonging that will infiltrate the author's entire adult life. All My Mothers and Fathers is Michael Blumenthal's moving and powerful account of how he put his life together again, and made both a break from and peace with his past.

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About the Author:

Michael Blumenthal is the author of six books of poetry, including Days We Would Rather Know and Against Romance. He has been published in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Boston Globe, the Paris Review, the New Republic, and Time. The recipient of Pushcart Prizes as well as a Fulbright, a Guggenheim, a Rockefeller/Bellagio, and other prestigious awards, he was the Director of the Creative Writing Program at Harvard for ten years. He currently lives in Marseilles.

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