Subject Guides Books Reading Lists If you liked Operating Instructions...

If you liked Operating Instructions...

A single mother and writer grappling alone with the problems of a newborn baby presents a vivid account of the confusion, joys, sorrows, and struggles of the first year in her son's life.

Fiction Read Alikes

  • Open House
    Elizabeth Berg
    Struggling to come to terms with her husband's abandonment, Samantha sets out to construct a new life for herself and her eleven-year-old son, despite financial hardship, and to rediscover her own identity, which had been lost in her attempts to save her marriage.
  • The Marriage Diaries
    Rebecca Campbell
    Bored with his role as a stay-at-home father while his sophisticated wife makes a living as a top fashion buyer in London, eccentric writer Sean begins to record the hilarious ups and downs of being a house husband, including his attraction to a mother in his todder son's playgroup.
  • The Ten-Year Nap
    Meg Wolitzer
    Ten years after leaving high-power jobs to raise their children, four New York friends enter their forties while struggling with the differences between their past ideals and their present realities, a situation that become turbulent when one of them meets a successful working mother of three who seems to have it all.
  • Little Earthquakes
    Jennifer Weiner
    A chef, an event planner, and a basketball player's wife find their marriages and careers in Philadelphia challenged by new motherhood, difficult schedules, and infidelity, in a tale complicated by the return of a woman from Los Angeles whose life was interrupted by tragedy.
  • The Mommy Club
    Sarah Bird
    A young surrogate mother attempts to make an ordered world for her child as she wanders through the maze of trendy yuppiedom to the treacherous waters of her relations with her old love, Sinclair.
  • Parallel Play
    Thomas Rayfiel
    Despite her love for her doctor husband Harvey, Eve, a young mother, suddenly comes to the realization--sparked by her feelings of disconnection at a playgroup, the reappearance of an old boyfriend, and the lasting effects of her own dysfunctional childhood--that she is completely unprepared for motherhood.
  • Dating Big Bird
    Laura Zigman
    Thirty-five-year-old careerwoman Ellen Green wants a child, but her boyfriend Malcolm doesn't, so she is forced to consider the option of single motherhood.
  • The Accidental Mother
    Rowan Coleman
    Rendered an instant and unlikely mother when her best friend dies and names her the guardian of two young girls, corporate professional Sophie Mills finds her carefully structured life spinning out of control and must profoundly adjust her life philosophies in order to meet parenting challenges.
  • Slummy Mummy
    Fiona Neill
    Follows the misadventures of stay-at-home mom Lucy Sweeney, who struggles between the chaos of caring for three young boys and her ideals as inspired by a perfectionist reality-television style program.
  • The Brambles
    Eliza Minot
    The three Bramble siblings--Margaret, an overwhelmed mother of three who is taking on her ailing father as well; single Edie, dealing with feelings of isolation; and Max, newly unemployed and struggling with the responsibilities of marriage and fatherhood--attempt to deal with the complexities, challenges, and emotional upheaval of their individual lives.
  • Tales from the Crib
    Risa Green
    In the sequel to Notes from the Underbelly, Lara Stone struggles to cope with the overwhelming challenges of new motherhood, while dealing with the arrival of her long-estranged father and his stripper girlfriend, her husband's flirting with a gorgeous young thing, and her nanny's voodoo spells.

Non-Fiction Read Alikes

  • Alternadad
    Neal Pollack
    A hilarious account of the writer and his wife's unconventional and unorthodox approach to the art of parenting ranges from their trips to a series of rock festivals to contending with a biting problem, offering a version of the new American family that captures the absurdities of modern-day life
  • The Big Rumpus
    Ayun Halliday
    The creator of The East Village Inky presents whimsical baby-related stories that reveal the lighter side of such topics as declawing the cat, her son's circumcision, public breast-feeding, the perfect Halloween costume, head lice, and holiday chaos.
  • Breeder
    Ariel Gore and Bee Lavender, editors
    A funny, often touching collection of essays on motherhood--by Allison Crews, Beth Lucht, Ayun Halliday, Peri Escarda, Katie Granju, and other writers--explores the great institution through the eyes of Gen-X mothers.
  • Waiting for Birdy
    Catherine Newman
    The Internet columnist chronicles a year in her life as she anticipated the birth of her second child while coping with the realities and challenges of life with an active toddler.
  • The Second Nine Months
    Vicki Glembocki
    The author shares her experiences of the nine months following the birth of her daughter, detailing the problems and difficulties she faced during her transformation into motherhood.
  • Mamaphonic : balancing motherhood and other creative acts
    edited by Bee Lavender and Maia Rossini
    A compendium of confessions and stories by women who seek to balance a creative life with raising children collects the musings of women who are working as writers, illustrators, poets, and punk rockers while also rocking the cradle.
  • Essential Hip mama : writing from the cutting edge of parenting
    edited by Ariel Gore
    A survey of the best of Hip Mama, a zine for modern mothers, includes funny, poignant, soulful writing about dating, circumcision, abortion, home schooling, and much, much more.
  • Guarding the Moon: a mother's first year
    by Francesca Lia Block
    The author chronicles her feelings of joy and anxiety while observing her daughter grow and mature through her first twelve months, and describes the gifts that motherhood has brought into her life.
Page last changed: November 05, 2012, at 04:54 PM EST.