Published by Macmillan on 5/13/2014
Source: TLC Book Tours
Buy from IndieBound
When Nicole invites the “mommies” of her Brooklyn playgroup to her parent’s Long Island beach home for a weekend getaway, she’s too clouded in anxiety over a potential catastrophic world-ending event to see the tension bubbling beneath the group’s surface. Stay-at-home dad Rip is struggling with his infertility and hopes for a second child while attempting to tie down his attraction to the group’s outsider, Tiffany. Outwardly confident, but insecure in the place she struggled to reach, Tiffany cuts the other mommies down in a battle for superiority. Together with a pregnant lesbian couple and a woman attempting to hold on to her family’s once powerful name, the personalities in the playgroup collide throughout the novel’s funny and insightful scenes.
Each of Cutting Teeth‘s characters is overdrawn in a way that makes it easy to find familiarity in their extreme personalities and, though they feel more like caricatures than real people, at least pieces of their stories will ring true. Fierro’s strength is in more reflective moments, like those seen through the eyes of Tibetan nanny Tenzien as she works her memory recording the idioms the mommies throw around while she tenderly cares for their children. In comparison, the extremity of the playgroup tends to go a little off the rails, particularly toward the end of the novel.
Still, book clubs will want to pick up Cutting Teeth by the box full. Though it’s unlikely every member will walk away loving the novel, the characters and themes set a perfect stage for the engaging, lively discussion every group hopes to have.