Tina Jordan
May 30, 2008 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Accidentally on Purpose

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Mary F. Pols
publisher
Ecco Press
genre
Nonfiction, Memoir

We gave it an A-

When Mary F. Pols, a film critic for California’s Contra Costa Times, gets pregnant at 39, her sheer joy tempers all nervousness. ”I’m going to have a family after all,” she tells her best friend in Accidentally on Purpose. But there’s a problem: The father, Matt, is an unemployed 29-year-old whom she ”had spent less than twenty-four hours with, half of them sleeping.” With humor, grace, and some anger, Pols struggles through pregnancy and the dreary months of early infancy, honoring Matt’s wishes to be in their son’s life. Though critical of him, Pols is even harder on herself. It’s rare to find such honesty, even in an account so personal. A-

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