Expecting: The Inner Life of Pregnancy – Chitra Ramaswamy (4 stars)

Expecting: The Inner Life of Pregnancy – Chitra Ramaswamy

A touching collection of essays on the ups and downs of pregnancy

Chitra Ramaswamy’s touching collection of essays on pregnancy is a far cry from the glossy, sterile magazine covers of ever-smiling, perfectly bumped mothers-to-be. Expecting is a warts-and-all tourists' guidebook to the beautiful, terrifying, emotional and reflective voyage from woman to mother. Firmly-based in reality – the Edinburgh of her home; the London of her childhood; the Western Isles of her holidays – she negotiates these well-trodden places as a stranger, physically and emotionally changing over the nine months of her pregnancy. From her initial shock and disbelief in a rainy Scottish winter to a complete physical and mental breakdown in an idyllic woodland setting, the reader accompanies her on a most personal journey.

Beautiful comparisons to her favourite works of art and locations the world over make this engrossing read relatable and pleasurable to those with and without children. During the final passionate and visceral chapter, the reader is alongside, cheering her on.

Out Thu 7 Apr, published by Saraband.