Pigeon Mothers caught my attention due to its unique title and the book cover. The cover shows a pigeon mother keeping a watchful eye on her young children. The story of the book also runs parallel to this idea.
The novel is about a young girl named Cole. She is a white girl who is left to collect the pieces of her life when her father dies. Cole and her mother Helen are left behind in a relationship that never existed in the first place. The young girl feels anchorless and lost after her father’s death. Helen, her mother does nothing to salve the pain. The pieces of her life seem to fall apart when after the neighborhood bully beats her up she discovers that she’s an adopted child. The truth sinks in her and she realizes why the relationship with Helen was barren at best. Cole comes to know that her real/birth mother, Janet wants her back. She runs away to Coney Island where destiny plays a cruel trick and brings her in contact with Janet only to be snatched away due to Janet’s criminal schemes which ultimately lead to her arrest. The young girl, Cole is broken-hearted and left distraught at this change of events and feels more orphaned than ever. In the midst of this chaos, her adoptive mother Helen begins to feel the rising emotions of motherhood and tries to convince Cole to give her another chance. Does Cole reunite with Helen? Or does Janet come back and revive what was lost? It needs to be read
Pigeon Mothers could have been better if not for the lengthy descriptions of the scene which really do not add to the story instead worked against the flow of the narrative. There is too much background before the actual action takes place which makes it a dull read. I really had to stick to it till the end to know what happened. This could have been avoided by leaving out the descriptions. Too many character names too are dropped from time to time which can confuse the reader and draw away from the actual story.
This could have been literary brilliance if the author could have paid attention to the flow of events rather than giving background information for readers. Set in 1986 in Bridgeport, CT and Coney Island, NY, the story is realistic as it is based on first-hand knowledge of how working-class and desperate people survive.
For me this book fails to deliver what it really could.
I received an ARC of the book in exchange for an honest review. The views expressed are personal and are not biased or partial towards the author or publisher.