I received a copy of The Mighty Queens of Freeville in the mail today, and already finished it! Though I only intended to read a few pages to get a feel for the writing, I simply couldn't put it down. This book is a memoir, the story of "a mother, a daughter, and the people who raised them"; the Mighty Queens of Freeville are the women of Dickinson's extended family who live and thrive in tiny Freeville NY.
Author Amy Dickinson writes "Ask Amy", the syndicated advice column that replaced that of the late Ann Landers (though I didn't know that when I requested the book). This book though is not about Dickinson's career; it is about the women who ultimately gave her the skills she needed to make a success of her job.
This memoir follows Dickinson from her divorce in England (when daughter Emily is a toddler) to Emily's freshman year of college. Dickinson's writing is no-nonsense and engaging. The women in her life are simultaneously ordinary and extraordinary- her mother rises above her father's abandonment and the loss of the family farm to eventually find her niche as a college professor. Dickinson is by turns funny and touching, and the book is a wonderful tribute to her family and its resilience.
I highly recommend this wonderful book. Definitely five stars, and would make a great gift for the important women in your life.