cover of Not What I Expected

Not What I Expected

An anthology of poetry, fiction, essays and artwork by Jody Bolz, Carole Burns, Grace Cavalieri, Christina Daub, Mary Doroshenk, Patricia Gray, Clarinda Harriss, Anne Hasselbrack, Jacqueline Jules, Mary Ann Larkin, Lyn Lifshin, Hilary Tham, Donna Vitucci, Mary-Sherman Willis, and tons more.

Not What I Expected

“This beautiful collection belongs on every nightstand, beside the rocking chair and next to the bottle warmer; a book any mother can crawl into in the middle of the night while she patiently waits for the child to stop his fussing, to sleep, and dream his angel dreams. These sensitively told tales are a warm embrace for any mother needing a reminder that she is not alone in this glorious mess.”
Jeanne Marie Laskas, Washington Post columnist, author of Growing Girls and Forty Acres and a Poodle

“A collection that is by turns heartening and harrowing, insightful and irreverent but, page after page, always honest. We don’t remember our own birth, we can't reflect our own death, so the squawking arrival of parenthood and its glorious life tangle is our only true relationship with the cycle of creation. Here, in essays, poems and personal dispatches, is a sketch of that singular experience. The best thing you can say about book on birth? It delivers. And this one does.”
Geoff Boucher, Los Angeles Times

“I’m a father of seven and figured that by osmosis maybe I’d learned something about motherhood. But this book opened my eyes and my heart and made me realize how much I don’t know and didn’t understand. For me, Not What I Expected is a journey through the looking glass, to the other side of the miracle. Reading it is an experience that I will always treasure.”
William Mckeen, Professor and Chair, University of Florida Department of Journalism. Author of Highway 61: A Father-and-Son Journey Through the Middle of America

“This book, full of pathos and humor, explores every aspect of motherhood. The writers in this anthology take you on a ride to many unexpected places: from the terrifying terrain of losing a baby to the exaltation of a successful pregnancy against the odds. Here you’ll find the blood and sweat and grit of parenthood, all the real secrets that nobody tells you before your baby is born.”
Jennifer Margulis, author of Why Babies Do That and Toddler: Real-Life Stories of Those Fickle, Irrational, Urgent, Tiny People We Love