MISSING MY MOTHER-IN-LAW

Dear Ella and Suse,

My mother-in-law passed away 2 weeks ago and I am feeling very sad and am
missing her. Need a book to lift my spirits...

In need of literary prescription in MD.
Yours,
Forlorn
Dear Forlorn,
We feel that the best medicine for you is to read about some other great Mother in Laws from Literature. Yours must have been a great and redoubtable one for you to miss her so much, and she clearly deserved your devotion. Literature is riddled with mischief-making mother-in-laws, and we are very glad that yours escaped this cliche. One of our favourite Mother in Laws (let's call them MILs), is Mrs Monro from Alice Thomas Ellis's Summerhouse Trilogy, whose son Syl is just about to marry a girl twenty years his younger. Mrs Monro has grave suspicions about the oncoming wedding, and her musings on the subject of love, fate, smoking and her son are dryly hilarious. The three books each tell the tale of the forthcoming marriage from a different viewpoint, and it is great to read them in succession and compare the way the characters speak of different events. Very English and dark, these novels are warm but very much questioning family relationships.
A more rounded view of MILs comes in Joanna Trollope's Daughters-in-Law. There are three MIL's in this book, and they are varyingly controlling, uninterested, too interested or plain mad. Reading this book will hook you in and there will almost inevitably be some characteristics of your own MIL that ring true from this book, others that are an exaggeration, and others that we hope will act as a stark contrast to the good relationship that you had with your own MIL. Trollope's book wil enfold you into its intergenerational arms, and keep you chuckling through these glum days.
Yours,
Ella and Suse
We prescribe - The Summerhouse Trilogy by Alice Thomas Ellis
Daughters in law by Joanna Trollope

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A SLUG WITH VISIONS OF HUMANITYABUSIVE RELATIONSHIP ENDED, LEAVING SCARSADULT ACNEAFRAID OF FAILUREALCOHOLIC DAUGHTERALONE ON A WIDE, WIDE SEAAlways wanted to be a writerANOREXICANXIOUS ABOUT SINGLE FRIENDAT A FORK IN THE ROADAVID READER, LACKING BOOKBEREFT OF A CATBORED IN ALABAMABOTHERED AND BEWILDEREDBRAIN SHRINKING MOMMABROKENBROKEN HEARTBROKEN HEARTED - TORN BETWEEN MALE AND FEMALE BEST FRIENDSBROKEN UP WITH GIRLFRIEND; FEELING BURNT OUTCAN’T MOVE ONCANDIDA REVOLTAIRECan’t afford to go on holidayCAST ASIDECHEATEDCHRONIC PAINCOLD HANDS AND FEETCONCERNED ABOUT DAUGHTERCONFLICTED PARTNERSCRAVING FOOD CULTURECYNICAL STEPSONDAILY ABUSEDARK NIGHT OF THE SOULDEPRESSED AND UNABLE TO READDEPRESSED DURING CHRISTMAS, AND LONELY NOWDESPERATELY WANTON GIRLDIRECTIONLESSEASILY BORED WITH NOVELSEMOTIONALLY SABOTAGED BY MY MOTHEREMOTIONS IN EXTREMEEVER THE FRIEND AND NOT THE PARTNEREXTREME ANGER AND FRUSTRATIONFADING AWAYFALLEN OUT WITH MY FRIENDSFALLING IN LOVE WAY TOO FASTFAZED AND CONFLICTEDFEAR OF CONFRONTATIONFEAR OF GETTING OLDFERTILITY PROBLEMSFOMO (FEAR OF MISSING OUT)FORGING A BRIGHT NEW FUTUREFRIEND WHO HAS LOST A CHILD LATE IN PREGNANCYFRIENDS DAUGHTER LOST TO SUICIDEFrightened of lifeGAPING HOLEGetting over a break-upGIRL OF UNCERTAINTY, BOUND BY RULESGIRL WHO DOESN’T FIT INGRIPPED BY LOSSGUILTY FRIENDHOPELESSNESSHOUSE AND LIBRARY DESTROYED BY FIREI love music more than booksI no longer commute – and therefore I no longer readI PEEK AT THE END OF NOVELS BECAUSE I WORRY THE CHARACTER MIGHT NOT MAKE ITI wish I were famousIN MOURNING OVER LITERARY DEATHSINABILITY TO SIT STILL AND ANXIETYINCONSISTENT AND NON-STUDIOUS- BUT AMBITIOUS NONETHELESSINDECISIVEINSECUREINTERESTED IN EVERYTHING BUT ACHIEVING NOTHINGINVISIBLE WOMANITALIAN NOVEL CURESJILTED AND UNSUREJOB IN LIBRARY UNDER THREATKICKED IN THE HEADLEADENLIVING ON THE MARGINSLONE RANGERLONELY AND DEJECTEDLONELY IN LOVELONELY IN MONOTONOUS JOB, LOSING SANITYLOOKING FOR A SENSE OF PURPOSELOOKING FORWARDSLOSS OF A SISTERLOSTLOW WATTAGELOW-ENERGY PESSIMISMMAD SCIENTISTMARRIED TO A MAN, ATTRACTED TO WOMENMISSED THE BOATMISSING MY MOTHER-IN-LAWMUM GOING BACK TO WORKNEED TO LET GONEW CITY, NEW LIFE -BOOKS FOR 12 YEAR OLD BOY?NEW FRIENDSHIP WITH HOLOCAUST SURVIVORNIGHTMARISH COLLEAGUENOMADIC FLANEURPOST NATAL DEPRESSIONPREGNANT AND ALONE