From the New York Times best-selling author of The Middle Place comes a new memoir that examines the bond - sometimes nourishing, sometimes exasperating, occasionally divine - between mothers and daughters. When Kelly Corrigan was in high school, her mother neatly summarised the the division of labour in her family as: 'Your father's the glitter, but I'm the glue.' This meant nothing to Kelly, who left her childhood sure that her mum - with her inviolable commandments, curious introversion and proud stoicism - would be nothing more than background for the rest of Kelly's life, which she was gradually orienting toward adventure. After college, armed with a backpack, her personal mission statement, and a wad of Travelers Checks, she took off for Hong Kong, Thailand, Australia, New Zealand and Fiji to see things and Become Interesting. But it didn't turn out how she pictured it. In a matter of months, her bum-bag full of savings had dwindled to a handful and it became clear that unless she was ready to go home she needed a job. That's how she met John Tanner, a newly widowed Australian father of two looking for a live-in nanny. They chatted for an hour, discussed timing and pay, and a week later Kelly moved in. And there, in that small, motherless house, in a suburb north of Sydney, her mother's voice was suddenly everywhere, playing like talk radio from hidden speakers, nudging and nagging, cautioning and directing, escorting her through a terrain as foreign as any she had ever trekked. Every day she spent with the Tanner kids was a day she spent reconsidering her relationship with her mother, turning it over in her hands like a shell, trying to hear whatever messages might be trapped in its shadowy spiral. This is a book about the difference between travel and life experience, stepping out and stepping up, fathers and mothers. But mostly, it's about who you admire and why, and how that changes over time.