Mom & Me & Mom
By Maya Angelou
(Random House, $22)
With more than 8 million copies of her six autobiographies in print, Maya Angelou has lived a well-examined life. Her new memoir slides the spotlight elsewhere this time by focusing on Angelou’s relationship with “Lady,” the mother with whom she was reunited at age 13. As Angelou gets to know this strong, proud, independent woman, Lady in turn helps Angelou find her own true self.
The Spark: A Mother’s Story of Nurturing Genius
By Kristine Barnett
(Random House, $25)
Twelve-year-old Jacob Barnett has an IQ higher than Einstein’s and is considered a prospect for a Nobel Prize in astrophysics someday. When he was 3, though, his autism led therapists to ignore his superior capabilities and caused Jake to close himself off from the world. His mother, Kristine, shares the inspiring tale of how she unlocked her son’s beautiful mind — and how other parents can too.
If It’s Not One Thing, It’s Your Mother
By Julia Sweeney
(Simon & Schuster, $26)
Motherhood requires a sense of humor. Actress Julia Sweeney — best known from Saturday Night Live — has wit to spare as she shares her adventures in parenting. She doesn’t play her mother-daughter experiences for laughs, even when the birds-and-bees talk with her 9-year-old comes, unexpectedly, at a Thai restaurant. Instead, Sweeney lets the honesty of these moments shine through, whether poignant, painfully funny or both.