AMERICAN BASTARD by Jan Beatty reviewed in On the Seawall!

Any baby, let alone a bastard baby, is born a mystery, and babies don’t come with directions. But Jan Beatty’s iconoclastic memoir American Bastard does come with directions. Here is how she tells us to read her story:

“Try staying with the foreign idea that a baby is born, then sold to another person. Stay with it. There is the physical trauma of the broken bond. There is the erasure of the baby’s entire history. There are these hands that have a different smell, a different DNA – reaching for the baby, calling it theirs. Stay with that for a while. No talking.”