Amateur Hour: Motherhood in Essays and Swear Words

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An emotionally honest, arresting, and funny collection of essays about motherhood and adulthood...

"Being a mother is a gift."

Where's my receipt?

Welcome to essayist Kimberly Harrington's poetic and funny world of motherhood, womanhood, and humanhood, not necessarily in that order. It's a place of loud parenting, fierce loving, too much social media, and occasional inner monologues where timeless debates are resolved such as Pro/Con: Caving to PTO Bake Sale Pressure ("PRO: Skim the crappiest brownies for myself. CON: They're really crappy.") With accessibility and wit, she captures the emotions around parenthood in artful and earnest ways, highlighting this time in the middle--midlife, the middle years of childhood, how women are stuck in the middle of so much. It's a place of elation, exhaustion, and time whipping past at warp speed. Finally, it's a quiet space to consider the girl you were, the mother you are, and the woman you are always becoming.


Product Details

$15.99  $14.71
Harper Perennial
Publish Date
May 01, 2018
5.2 X 0.9 X 7.9 inches | 0.6 pounds
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About the Author

Kimberly Harrington is a regular contributor to McSweeney's Internet Tendency, the cofounder and editor of the parenting humor site Razed, and a copywriter and creative director. Her work has appeared in the New Yorker, Timothy McSweeney's Quarterly Concern, and Medium. She lives in Vermont on purpose.


"Kimberly Harrington deftly and hilariously uncovers all of the lies and bullshit women are told about motherhood. This book made me laugh, sure, but it also made me feel seen."--Jennifer Romolini, chief content officer at and author of Weird in a World That's Not
"Amateur Hour finds Kimberly Harrington as funny, cutting, honest, and brilliant as ever."--Christopher Monks, editor of McSweeney's Internet Tendency and author of The Ultimate Game Guide to Your Life
"Her quirky, dissenting energy should resonate with parents who find little use for the usual mommy-blogger fare."--Kirkus
"Funny, angry, and moving...readers--particularly those who have been in the motherhood trenches--will smile, laugh, and maybe even shed a tear."--Publishers Weekly
"Amateur Hour will make readers rotate through laughter, tears, and cringing, and are all written with refreshingly honest and bold abandon."--Allison Banner, Booklist
"It takes real talent to be consistently funny while sharing both your worst fears and greatest dreams. Kimberly Harrington is a mother of two who does just that with her debut collection... Whether she's aiming for your funny bone or your heart, Harrington's takes on motherhood are spot-on."--BookPage
"Kimberly Harrington is one tough mother. Filled with the blunt, witty observations... Amateur Hour is a candid look at both the joys and horrors of family life, including pregnancy loss, marital strife and the guilt and exhaustion of "work-life balance"--Salon