If you think that being a black woman raising five kids in the '90s is hard, then your head will spin when you read Mama by Terry McMillan.
Mama is extremely funny. At the same time it is honest about what a good woman will do to push her children higher than she can hope to go. This book is a tough, touching story about survival, and about exposing the pain that black people put on themselves and one another. This book deals with emotional healing and recovery.
The story of Mildred is no different from the four women Terry wrote about in Waiting to Exhale. They are trying to get their lives back together, moving from one man to the next. Mildred's life is a continual struggle against poverty and loneliness, while raising five kids with no support from her drunk husband Crook. She has to deal with a town full of nosy people, her crack-head son who's in and out of jail, her stepmother who she hates, and the five men she's in and out of relationships with.
To Mildred, the only thing that matters is the future of her five kids. She won't let anything stand in the way of giving them the life she never had. Even if that means being a prostitute, getting married to three different men only for their money, or moving out of town.
Terry has created an admirable novel that I have fallen in love with. These characters are earthy, realistic people who can walk out of the pages and onto the streets of Black America.
I strongly recommend this book to all African-American women and men. Read this book and see that African-American women have been mistreated by their men for years.
If you want a genuine story that will take you on a journey to a Black town in the 1960's, then get your copy of Mama today. Let Mildred Peacock tell you about her struggles, recoveries, and sacrifices to give her children a good life
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.