Open-uri20190131-4-17d6057_thumb

Kate Tuttle

Writer & Critic

Kate Tuttle

Writing on books and authors, race and politics, family and childhood.

Open-uri20191029-4-1mojnu5_profile

Songs and Stories to Keep the Ghosts at Bay

The child psychologist Selma Fraiburg wrote about a phenomenon she called ghosts in the nursery: the unexamined, maybe even unremembered, feelings from our earliest days that haunt us when we become parents. We all have them, those unmet needs or wishes from our own childhood, the painful bits that creep in and affect how we parent. I’m sure I’m haunted by more than one, but the one I know best is the bedtime ghost of fear and loneliness.
Catapult Link to Story
Open-uri20200213-4-a7oc2n_profile

Sarah DiGregorio’s history of premature birth shows promising developments

When Sarah DiGregorio gave birth to her daughter, Mira, at 28 weeks’ gestation, the baby weighed just one pound, thirteen ounces. She spent nearly two months in the NICU, but she survived — today, Mira’s a happy, healthy kindergartener, “funny and sharp and inquisitive,” DiGregorio said. It wasn’t until a year after her daughter’s birth that DiGregorio, a journalist whose previous work mostly revolved around food writing, sat down to write about it.
The Boston Globe Link to Story
Open-uri20200115-4-1cff1l2_profile

Peggy Orenstein on birds, bees, and boys

As soon as journalist Peggy Orenstein finished 2016’s “Girls and Sex,” friends suggested she write a follow-up volume about boys. She resisted. “I kept saying no, that’s really somebody else’s job. I don’t want to do that,” Orenstein said. “And I think part of it was fear that they wouldn’t talk to me.”.
The Boston Globe Link to Story
Open-uri20191111-4-1shuezr_profile

Review: Kevin Wilson's Nothing to See Here

In the great gothic ghost stories, children were often blessed (or cursed) with being able to see things adults could not: spirits and haints, things undead or at least unspoken. In real life, too, children can sometimes see things more clearly than grownups; like dogs, they are great judges of character.
Barnes & Noble Review Link to Story
Open-uri20191016-4-e33hd1_profile

Review: Gymnasts voice their fury in ‘The Girls’

The girls came from small towns and suburbs. All were energetic kids, climbing and tumbling and sending their parents scrambling for outlets for their daughters’ vibrant energy. They crossed paths with the predator in places where they should have been safe: gym, school, the doctor’s office. And they all came away from the encounters changed — even if it took years before they realized just how much, and why.
Los Angeles Times Link to Story
Open-uri20190826-4-16zpuxl_profile

'In the Country of Women' review: A family's strong female roots

"In the Country of Women" by Susan Straight Photo Credit: Catapult. IN THE COUNTRY OF WOMEN: A MEMOIR by Susan Straight (Catapult, 384 pp., $26) Some memoirs look deeply inward, examining how the self is formed in the crucible of the world. Susan Straight’s “In the Country of Women” works in the opposite way: addressed to the author’s three daughters, this is a book that spirals outward, gathering and illuminating stories of ancestors, family and community.
Newsday Link to Story
Open-uri20190131-4-myzl87_profile

Review of Stephanie Land's Maid

“My daughter learned to walk in a homeless shelter,” writes Stephanie Land. It’s a devastating opening line to Land’s memoir of poverty, parenting, and survival. The sentence will jar readers — it did me — and at the same time it raises the question: Just what does it look like to live in a homeless shelter with your infant?
The Boston Globe Link to Story
Open-uri20181203-4-oc83ee_profile

What Happened When My 12-Year-Old Black Son Sat Next To A Trump Supporter On A Plane

The days on either end of Thanksgiving are the nation’s busiest when it comes to travel. When my husband and I decided to spend the holiday with my family in Kansas, we knew that the flights from New York would be packed, that the airport security lines would be long, that everything would be slower and more frustrating because of the volume of fellow travelers.
The Huffington Post Link to Story
Open-uri20181203-4-2hz85e_profile

Robin DiAngelo Wants White People to Confront Their Racism

In her 20 years’ training and educating diverse groups of people on the issues of race and social justice, Robin DiAngelo has seen it all: denial, defensiveness, and rivers of white tears. For Parlour, I spoke with DiAngelo about her new book, White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism, and how well-meaning white parents are among the most invested in pretending not to understand racism.
DAME Magazine Link to Story
Open-uri20181101-4-fgd98y_profile

Raised by white parents, a Korean adoptee wrestles with identity

Growing up with her adoptive white parents in a very white town in southern Oregon, Nicole Chung “kept a secret running tally of every single Asian person I had ever seen in public.” There were so few, and her isolation so internalized, that even as a bookish little girl the stories she wrote didn’t include Asian characters.
The Boston Globe Link to Story
Open-uri20180108-4-1nbdy9r_profile

Story Behind the Book: Oliver de la Paz

When the Globe caught up with poet Oliver de la Paz, he was in his car, waiting in a school pickup line. De la Paz, who teaches at Holy Cross, was a poet long before he became a father, but in his most recent work he grapples with the beauty and difficulty of both roles. His children feature prominently in de la Paz’s current manuscript in process, from which he’ll read as the headliner of this year’s Lesley University Winter Series.
The Boston Globe Link to Story
Open-uri20170516-4-b7eb6m_profile

Kevin Wilson's Perfect Little World: It takes a utopia to raise a child

Rather than join her classmates in celebrating, the first thing Isabel Poole does after graduating from high school is tell her art teacher, Hal, that she’s pregnant. the five stages of Hal’s reaction seem to be terror, ambivalence, drunkenness, violence, and disappearance. Izzy is left adrift and feeling alone in her Tennessee town.
The Boston Globe Link to Story

About

Kate Tuttle

I'm on the executive board of the National Book Critics Circle. My reviews and articles about books have appeared in the Boston Globe, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Salon, Atlantic.com, and elsewhere. Native Kansan, longtime Cantabrigian, lately of Georgia, now in New Jersey. Mother, wife, pal.

Feel free to email me at kate.tuttle@gmail.com.