Name: margalit
Location: Massachusetts, United States Professional writer, educational advocate, opinionated ultra liberal mother of 18 year old twins, living life in the slow lane due to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, congestive heart failure, and diabetes.

email: margalitc at yahoo dot com

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Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Supermom Saves the World

Do you read Melanie Lynne Hauser's blog, the Refrigerator Door? If not, shame on you! Melanie is hilarious and her writing is just so.... perfect. She writes about her husband Duh, and her two teenage sons, and a lot about their blocked toilets. She also writes books. Two of them so far. And today is the publication day for Supermom Saves the World, the second book in her poignant but hysterically funny look at motherhood and small town life from the viewpoint of a superhero.

Birdie Lee, the divorced mother of two, suffered a Horrible Swiffer Accident in the first book Melanie wrote, Confessions of a Super Mom. The Horrible Swiffer Accident turned meek housefrau Birdie from a divorcee wondering how she could ever have pleased her obnoxious ex-husband Dr. Dan who hated the very notion she was a supermarket checker, into a Superhero that already saved her small Kansas town of Astro Park in Confessions of a Supermom.

Supermom Saves the Day begins with Birdie still in love with Carl the geeky scientist, and yet another Horrible Swiffer Accident. Due to what she calls the Horrible Swiffer Accident she has been gifted with super powers. Super Mom Powers to be exact. She can clean a house lickety-split with no effort at all. She can detect exactly what is on a kid’s breath, whether it’s alcohol or tobacco. Her super powers have left her a dynamo in the bedroom, too, as she discovers with her new love, Carl.

She’s also a card carrying member of the Justice League of America, a peer of Batman and Superman. Yet she knows that no one ever wonders if it’s Batman’s or Superman’s “time of the month” when either of them get riled up over injustice in their cities. Birdie is a Superhero, but she doesn't have much respect. She's the Rodney Dangerfield of Superheros.

Her duties as a mom and Superhero lead Birdie into yet another curious situation in Astro Park regarding the new stadium the Mayor has built for the local football them. Something about the stadium set off Birdie's alarms and she begins to investigate, which sets into motion a fantastic plot to make huge profits and getting rid of Supermom for good. Shadowy characters behind the Mayor lead Birdie and the entire town into terrible danger, but her superhuman powers save the town once again.

On the surface, this book is a light tale of superpowers and pathetic crooks. But underneath the story lies the real plot, the everyday life of a suburban mom involved in too much PTA fundraising, living with her suddenly moody teenage son, and her daughter who has befriended a girl Birdie doesn't know well and doesn't like at all. Birdie loves her Starbucks coffee, and can't stand some of the PTA moms that take the PTA fundraising a bit too seriously. She's the kind of mom you can see yourself sharing a Caramel Macciato and a good gossip with in your local Starbucks, if she only had the time.

Birdie is dealing with her ex-husband who is a manipulative jerk, and the possibility of a blended family as she and Carl plan their marriage and their future life with three teens that aren't particularly fond of each other.

Birdie addresses the important issues of motherhood, dealing with neighborhood kids with lousy parents, her son's first love, and her daughter's first driving license. But she does so with the power of a superhero, and the love of her small suburban town.

Melanie has created a character that resonates with mothers everywhere. Birdie is often harried, confused, and overwhelmed by her busy life and all the challanges that whirl around her. I identify with Birdie when she's cautiously teaching her daughter to drive her minivan and dealing with her son's adolescence as he falls in love with a peach smelling girl, an experience that even homebaked cookies doesn't cure. Her discomfort with the transfer of funds from the arts to Astro Park's new sports complex is commonplace in so many school districts. Birdie is the kind of mom that never stops being a mom, even in the midst of her crimefighting and saving the world. You can't find a better character than that!

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Blogger Mamma said...

Thanks for the recommendation!!

7/3/07 12:18 AM  

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