A gripping, beautifully written and taboo-busting debut novel about motherhood and female identity, for readers of Anna Hope's EXPECTATION and Sheila Heti's MOTHERHOOD.
What if the thing you most wanted feels nothing like you expected?
A gripping, beautifully written and taboo-busting debut novel about motherhood and female identity.
After five exhilarating years in New York, Stevie has a successful career and a glamorous social life. But what she most wants is a baby, an aspiration that feels impossible given that she is single, thirty-eight and living in a tiny apartment in Manhattan, far away from most of her family in England.
Determined to become a mother, Stevie returns to London and has a baby on her own. When she gives birth to Ash, she finds motherhood painfully at odds with her former life and her expectations.
She begins to wonder if having a child was a mistake - and what she might be willing to do to escape. As she struggles with her new reality and what her future might hold, revelations from the past change everything she believed about family and love.
A richly textured, exciting and mysterious debut novel showing the push and pull of motherhood, career identity and what it means to be a woman with multiple sides. Relatable and entertaining. I was absolutely glued to it - Emma Gannon, author of OLIVE (2022)
A vivid, compelling story about the unspoken truths of motherhood, family and feminine ideals. Tender, unflinching and beautifully evoked - Francesca Hornak, author of Seven Days of Us (2022)
An engaging parable about the ambiguity of modern motherhood, told with warmth and wit - LEAH HAZARD, bestselling author of HARD PUSHED (2022)
Maxwell explores uncomfortable but important truths about motherhood brilliantly in her story of a mother falling apart, and piecing herself back together - Julia Bueno, author of THE BRINK OF BEING