About My Mother

About My Mother Summary

A Message from Mike Rowe, the Dirty Jobs Guy: Just to be clear, About My Mother is a book about my grandmother, written by my mother. That’s not to say it’s not about my mother—it is. In fact, About My Mother is as much about my mother as it is about my grandmother. In that sense, it’s really a book about “mothers.”

…It is not, however, a book written by me. True, I did write the foreword. But it doesn’t mean I’ve written a book about my mother. I haven’t. Nor does it mean my mother’s book is about her son. It isn’t. It’s about my grandmother. And my mother. Just to be clear.—Mike 

A love letter to mothers everywhere, About My Mother will make you laugh and cry—and see yourself in its reflection. Peggy Rowe’s story of growing up as the daughter of Thelma Knobel is filled with warmth and humor. But Thelma could be your mother—there’s a Thelma in everyone’s life. She’s the person taking charge—the one who knows instinctively how things should be. Today, Thelma would be described as an alpha personality, but while growing up, her daughter Peggy saw her as a dictator—albeit a benevolent, loving one. They clashed from the beginning—Peggy, the horse-crazy tomboy, and Thelma, the genteel-yet-still-controlling mother, committed to raising two refined, ladylike daughters. Good luck.

When major league baseball came to town in the early 1950s and turned sophisticated Thelma into a crazed Baltimore Orioles groupie, nobody was more surprised and embarrassed than Peggy. Life became a series of compromises—Thelma tolerating a daughter who pitched manure and galloped the countryside, while Peggy learned to tolerate the whacky Orioles fan who threw her underwear at the television, shouted insults at umpires, and lived by the orange-and-black schedule taped to the refrigerator door. 

Sometimes it takes a little distance to appreciate the people we love.

Book Reviews


America’s Grandmother5 star

These stories make you want to laugh as they remind you of things your mother has done! Loved every one!55


Great for those whose Mother ever annoyed them5 star

Such a heartwarming (and funny) story about the almost always complicated mother/daughter relationship. Many of the scenarios reminded me of my own mother and grandmother. It will definitely make you want to hug and/or call your mom.55


What a heartfelt story.5 star

My husband and I sat and listened to this beautiful story about Peggy and her mother. We loved it. We laughed a lot and boy it definitely reminded me of my own grandmother. Thanks for bringing us into your home and sharing your life. Isn’t life amazing.55


Uh...1 star

Well, listen I want to be nice, but this book just don’t cut it.15

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