When we received the email pitching this book to 5 Minutes for Books, almost all of us were interested in it! I don't think that we've ever had four of us vying for the same title. Dawn, Carrie, Lauren, and I each thought it was a book that would appeal to us, for different reasons.
Lauren reviewed Love in Time of Homeschooling on 5 Minutes for Books (linked to her review), and Carrie ended up reviewing it on Reading to Know (linked to her review), and then Carrie was nice enough to bring her copy to me when she came here for BEA in May.
What appealed to me about this book was the fact that a mother was doing what was in the best interest of her daughter in her 5th grade year. She thought that setting aside a year for her eldest daughter would be in her best interest: socially, emotionally and academically. Isn't that the definition of motherhood? For her, homeschooling was a sacrifice of love to her daughter. I have a friend who actually made a very similar choice last year for similar reasons with her tween daughter, and so I was very interested in seeing how it played out for the author Laura Brodie.
As the mother of a tween daughter, I'm aware of time passing so very quickly. I'm aware that I'm not meeting all her needs, and that I could sacrifice a bit more (and probably should).
I have never been interested in homeschooling, but what I do envy about all of my homeschooling friends is the sheer amount of time and influence that they have with their children.
In the end, Laura Brodie's experience was much like my own would be (and parenting is every day anyway): there were struggles, she lost her cool, and her daughter forgave her. I think the experience of almost complete togetherness throughout the day, tackling a difficult project (including things such as violin practice and math, which her daughter needed much prompting to do) caused her to examine herself as a mother.
In the end, I'm not sure she would have given herself an "A" in motherhood, and hindsight gave her some other ideas that might have better suited their academic plans, but I think that the overall experience was something that was a success in both her mind and her daughter's. They both ended up learning (academically and emotionally) -- about the world and themselves.
If you are considering homeschooling for any reason (aside from religious -- because though she discussed that this is why many parents homeschool, she didn't investigate nor relate to that), Love in a Time of Homeschooling might be a good book to help you understand the benefits, the sacrifices, and the struggles -- at least of one family who chose one year of homeschooling.
This review is linked up to the I Read It carnival that happens the first Tuesday of each month at 5 Minutes for Books. Link up your reviews that you read at the suggestion of someone else.