New Ways to Kill your Mother

New Ways to Kill your Mother

Writers and Their Families

Book - 2012
Average Rating:
Rate this:
In a brilliant, nuanced, and wholly original collection of essays, the bestselling and award-winning author of Brooklyn and The Empty Family offers a fascinating exploration of famous writers' relationships to their families and their work.

In a brilliant, nuanced and wholly original collection of essays, the novelist and critic Colm Tóibín explores the relationships of writers to their families and their work.

From Jane Austen's aunts to Tennessee Williams's mentally ill sister, the impact of intimate family dynamics can be seen in many of literature's greatest works. Tóibín, celebrated both for his award-winning fiction and his provocative book reviews and essays, and currently the Mellon Professor in the Humanities at Columbia, traces and interprets those intriguing, eccentric, often twisted family ties in New Ways to Kill Your Mother. Through the relationship between W. B. Yeats and his father, Thomas Mann and his children, and J. M. Synge and his mother, Tóibín examines a world of relations, richly comic or savage in its implications. In Roddy Doyle's writing on his parents, Tóibín perceives an Ireland reinvented. From the dreams and nightmares of John Cheever's journals, Tóibín illuminates this darkly comic misanthrope and his relationship to his wife and his children. "Educating an intellectual woman," Cheever remarked, "is like letting a rattlesnake into the house." Acutely perceptive and imbued with rare tenderness and wit, New Ways to Kill Your Mother is a fascinating look at writers' most influential bonds and a secret key to understanding and enjoying their work.
Publisher: New York : Scribner, c2012.
Edition: First Scribner hardcover edition
ISBN: 9781451668551
Branch Call Number: 809 TOIBIN C
Characteristics: 345 pages ; 23 cm.


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Aug 05, 2017

As an English major in university (back in the day), I still like to read analyses of writers and writing. This excellent collection includes commentary about several writers I like and others I didn't know. Outstanding book for people interested in literary studies and how family can figure into fiction.

May 24, 2017

Interesting, well researched, excellently written essays of families, the role or lack of presence of mothers in the life of well known writers. A good bibliography gives you the sources for further reading.


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at LPL

To Top