When Belle Boggs' "The Art of Waiting" was published in Orion in 2012, it went viral, leading to republication in Harper's Magazine and an interview on NPR's The Diane Rehm Show. In that heartbreaking essay, Boggs eloquently recounts her realization that she might never be able to conceive. She searches the apparently fertile world around her - the emergence of 13-year cicadas, the birth of eaglets near her rural home, and an unusual gorilla pregnancy at a local zoo - for signs that she is not alone. Boggs also explores other aspects of fertility and infertility: the way longing for a child plays out in the classic Coen brothers film Raising Arizona; the depiction of childlessness in literature, from Macbeth to Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?; the financial and legal complications that accompany alternative means of family making; and the private and public expressions of iconic writers grappling with motherhood and fertility. She reports, with great empathy, complex stories of couples who adopted domestically and from overseas, LGBT couples considering assisted reproduction and surrogacy, and women and men reflecting on childless or child-free lives.
©2016 Belle Boggs (P)2016 HighBridge, a division of Recorded Books
We look for validation of our own experiences. I know that's what I was seeking when I picked up this book. But I didn't find it here.
If fertility treatments are not for you, this book may not have much to offer. It's a personal account of the cost, effects, and social repercussions of assisted reproductive technology. And that's fine. It is a well written account that touches on the inequality of access for people of color or LGBT, the varying degrees of insurance coverage, and the supportive community built up around assisted reproductive technology.
If, like me, you may be looking for your own tribe as you remain childless by chance, choice or circumstance, this book is not for you. I am still dealing with this loss, and I am still looking for the next step forward. I'm out here, waiting.
Lastly, the narrator spoke clearly, but with a wooden cadence and tone-deaf inflection that did not do justice to the often emotional content of the text. I think I would have preferred reading this in print.
Engineer in business school. I appreciate every genre but find business/professional reading and epic fantasy best suited to audio format.
I did not enjoy this book. The author seems obsessed with having a baby. My partner and I are successful, career minded people who delayed having children and are just starting to explore asisted conception possibilities so I was initially excited to hear someone else's journey. Unfortunately, I just couldn't relate to the author at all. My sense of self and accomplishment is in no way tied to my ability to make a baby and it seems like the author's is, which is cool for her but not something I want to invest time hearing about. The reader was plodding and monotone and made a bad narrative worse. To be fair, I only made it to Chapter 3 before deciding I didn't want to waste any more time so maybe it gets better or I missed the point.
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