Welcome to the "We Have No Time For A Book Group Book Group."  Here, we'll offer our recommendations on good books for the rare moment when you find a few free moments of quiet to sit down and read.

Our resident reviewer, Jo Keroes, received her PhD from Stanford University and was a Professor of English at San Francisco State University for more than 25 years. She is the author of Tales Out of School, Images of Teachers in Film and Fiction, and the mother of 2 daughters, including Amy Keroes, Founder & CEO of Mommy Tracked.



How Did We Get Here From There?

I like to review books after they’ve been reviewed. Let me explain. Some books get reviewed a lot automatically. The authors are famous for one reason or another – their expertise or celebrity, they’ve had best sellers, or their book concerns the month’s hot topic.

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Sweetened by Sugar.

If memoir is the literary genre of our time, then food is the ingredient that’s keeping the form fresh.

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The Latest Anna Quindlen Success.

Everyone loves Anna Quindlen. I love Anna Quindlen and have since, as only the second woman to have an op ed space in the NYTimes, she chronicled her own life as a working woman and mother and thus mirrored ours.

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Please Mr Postman.

Yes, text and e-mail messages are the stuff of our lives; by the minute we send furious signals demanding instant gratification. Sometimes, though, only a real letter will do.

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Committed: Does It Top Eat, Pray, Love?

F. Scott Fitzgerald famously declared there are no second acts in American lives. If you’ve read most of the reviews of Elizabeth Gilbert’s new book, Committed, you’d be inclined to agree.

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Happiness is a Book.

Ah. A New Year (note the caps). A time for resolutions kept and un. In this spirit, l can’t resist offering my own resolution: read more books.

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Best Books of 2009: If the NY Times and The New Yorker (and everyone else) can do it, so can Mommy Tracked.

I know it’s ridiculous suggesting that you sit down and read anything other than a catalogue, a gift list, or an instruction manual for putting together the latest four hundred-piece toy during the frantic holiday season, but consider this: January.

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Doomed to Dance.

Fans of Ivy and Bean rejoice. Book 6 in the series, Ivy + Bean Doomed to Dance, has arrived, and once again the two sassy best friends are in a fix.

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Art Imitates Life.

Researchers long ago established that a child develops a sense of story at a very early age. We know this intuitively, of course, and it’s why we begin reading to kids long before they can read for themselves or even understand all of what’s going on in a given story. But there aren’t a whole lot of kids’ books that actually depict them telling stories themselves

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Manhood for Amateurs.

By now, you’d have to be living under a rock (or a pile of unwashed laundry) not to have read about Michael Chabon’s new book, Manhood for Amateurs. All the reviewers agree that it’s smart, funny, sweet without being sentimental, and redolent of a real guy’s real familiarity with the daily details of family life.

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Reading Together.

No one who reads Mommy Track’d (and consults our anti-Princess reading list) needs to be reminded that reading to our kids is important or that encouraging them to become readers on their own is vital.

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Vampire Alternative.

Enough with the vampires. Consider instead a novel filled with just the right combination of fear and fantasy, heroism and heartbreak, all rendered in lively and lucid prose.

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Summer Reading.

I’ve just glanced back and noticed that I’ve begun my last few reviews in a kind of cranky mood. Not this one. It’s summer, after all. Now I’m not assuming that summer leaves you with any more time to read than you have at any other time.

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Afterbirth Delivers.

I’m getting a little tired seeing the piles of parenting books filling the shelves of big box bookstores, often in special “Mothering” sections. We’ve become a lucrative niche market for a publishing industry that’s doing everything it can not to perish.

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Empty Nest Reinvented.

The best thing you can ever do for your kids is prepare them to leave you. If you’ve loved them and the gods smile on you all, they’ll take off for lives of their own, do it at a reasonable age, and return only to visit.

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