The Mistress’s Daughter

A.M. Homes

The fiction of A.M. Homes always feels honest, even though it is characterized by events and characters as blatantly unreal as any on the page. In The Mistress’s Daughter, Homes takes a different tack and tries her hand at memoir writing—a means of expression of which Homes has professed strong suspicion. Nevertheless, she gives a frank, yet creative recounting of her experiences as an adoptee who is contacted as an adult by her birth parents. How Homes proceeds through the years subsequent to receiving this information highlights the nexus between her writing and her life. The lens is mightier than the sword in this alternately poisonous and honeyed memoir, as it points unrelentingly at the author’s ancestry, biological parents, and eventually, the writer herself.