Remember Mia - Alexandra Burt
This review was originally posted on Bookish Things & More


Remember Mia had me enthralled.  I couldn't stop reading, and had to find out what happened.

My heart ached for Estelle's loss.  Even when I suspected her, and wanted to shake her senseless.  Estelle definitely doesn't handle things the way you would think someone who discovers her child is missing would.  She struggles through many things when it comes to motherhood.  I think if some of those issues had been handled differently this would have been a completely different story.

That being said, we get delve into Estelle's memories.  From childhood until the moments before she woke up in the hospital.  Not all at once, but each memory is triggered during the therapy with her doctor to try to find the truth about what happened to Mia.  The whole time Estelle believes herself to be a monster.  She isn't sure what she's capable of, and doesn't know what many of the images in her memory mean.  She's thrown into a rabbit hole of her sadness.

Remember Mia has twists and turns that will have you flipping the pages to find the conclusion of the story.  You're not sure how everything is going to turn out, and if it will be a happy or sad ending.  In the end, all we have is hope.  Hope that you can dig yourself out of despair, handle what motherhood gives you, and that everything will turn out okay in the end.  I couldn't imagine being int he predicament the characters in this story face.  There were moments when I gasped, and others where I was horrified.  In the end, I'm happy I read this book.  It gives a different look at motherhood, and how people cope with their emotions.  Also how one reacts to events, and how those actions can be detrimental, or uplifting.

Guest Post

The Write Place

by Alexandra Burt

I pinch myself and I feel pain. It’s real: contracts, agents, publishers, my first book.

Remember Mia is a story of a missing baby, of motherhood, shortcomings, and isolation. But no

one tells stories like life itself and my journey is one of the most unlikely stories you will ever hear.

I was born in Germany in a small town in the East Hesse Highlands. The area is heavily

wooded with ranges of hills and forests straight out of Grimm’s fairytales. I was a gluttonous

reader—something I shared with my late mother—and I love to share my favorite memory of

her: There were no bookstores in town, I was too young to take the bus to the city and so I made

do with a small library in the basement of the city hall. I depleted the entire library within a

couple of years and from then on I was dependent on other people’s books. I’d watch my mother

read, a ferocious reader like myself, and I‘d wait for her to finish. Hurry up, I’d say, read faster,

how much longer, are you done? One day, tired of my nagging, she took a paperback and ripped

it in half, handed me the first half and continued to read the second. We had solved our dilemma

and from then on our shelves were filled with torn books. Many visitors gave us sideway glances

imagining some unruly children or pets destroying the spines of our books. We never told.

I studied English in middle school and read some English literature in high school but

read exclusively in my native language. After I moved to Texas, I worked as a freelance

translator and started reading English novels. The plan was to break into literary translations but

the union never panned out and I so decided to tell my own stories. I took writing classes and

eventually published some short fiction.

Between classes and publishing my short stories, years passed and those were in fact

difficult years. They seemed rather challenging considering I spent my days emerging myself in

concepts I really didn’t understand; there were the pragmatic mechanics like plot, pace, and

point-of-view but there were also the elusive concepts of voice, mood, atmosphere, and tone and not much made sense.

My unlikely story of authorhood, as implausible as it sounds, was inevitable in a way; I

love the English language and what Dorothy L. Sayers called its “deceptive air of simplicity.” I

recall the night I started writing Remember Mia, I recall imagining a woman in the grips of

postpartum depression, confronted by a psychiatrist to solve the disappearance of her infant

daughter, a tale of motherhood, of shortcomings, and isolation, and it felt like coming home; I

have lived in many places but once I set foot into the write place, I knew I was home.

There’s nothing else I can imagine doing for the rest of my life.

I’m going to stay put.