From the author ofHow Should a Person Be?(“one of the most talked-about books of the year”—TIME Magazine) and theNYT BestsellerWomen in Clothes comes a daring novel about whether to have children.
InMotherhood,Sheila Heti asks what is gained and what is lost when a woman becomes a mother, treating the most consequential decision of early adulthood with the candor, originality, and humor that have won Heti international acclaim and madeHow Should A Person Be? required reading for a generation.
In her late thirties, when her friends are askingwhenthey will become mothers, the narrator of Heti’s intimate and urgent novel considers whether she will do so at all. In a narrative spanning several years, casting among the influence of her peers, partner, and her duties to her forbearers, she struggles to make a wise and moral choice. After seeking guidance from philosophy, her body, mysticism, and chance, she discovers her answer much closer to home.
Motherhoodis a courageous, keenly felt, and starkly original novel that will surely spark lively conversations about womanhood, parenthood, and about how—and for whom—to live.
Sheila Heti is the author of seven books of fiction and nonfiction, includingHow Should a Person Be?whichwas aNew York TimesNotable Book and was named a best book of the year byThe New Yorker. She is co-editor of theNew York TimesbestsellerWomen in Clothes, and is the former Interviews Editor forThe Believermagazine. Her work has been published inThe New York Times, The London Review of Books, The Paris Review, McSweeney's,Harper's, andn+1.
“This inquiry into the modern woman’s moral, social and psychological relationship to procreation is an illumination, a provocation, and a response—finally—to the new norms of femininity, formulated from the deepest reaches of female intellectual authority. It is unlike anything else I’ve read. Sheila Heti has broken new ground, both in her maturity as an artist and in the possibilities of the female discourse itself.”—Rachel Cusk, author ofOutline andTransit
“I’ve never seen anyone write about the relationship between childlessness, writing, and mother’s sadnesses the way Sheila Heti does. I knowMotherhood is going to mean a lot to many different people—fully as much so as if it was a human that Sheila gave birth to—though in a different and in fact incommensurate way. That’s just one of many paradoxes that are not shied away from in this courageous, necessary, visionary book.”—Elif Batuman, author ofThe IdiotandThe Possessed