Margaret Karmar

Searching for Spenser

Parenting can be a struggle; especially parenting a disabled child. In this flawlessly written memoir, Kramar describes championing her son, diagnosed with Sotos syndrome, through his short life. She examines the experience of loving and losing a child and reminds us that there is a way forward through the grief. Kramar’s memoir offers guidance, wisdom and inspiration. An amazing story of redemption and hope.
Margaret Kramar’s memoir is a testament to the pain and beauty of parenthood—and the vulnerability it requires. With crisp, unsentimental prose, Kramar draws the reader into her overturned world after her second-born son is diagnosed with Sotos syndrome; she learns he will not look, act, or learn like most other children. Spencer grows into a zestful and curious boy, with his own quirks, talents, and wisdom, and Kramar becomes his determined advocate and steadfast champion. After he begins school and gets involved with theater, she is only one of his many fans.
Kramar is honest in her recollections—she is a narrator strong with love, but often bewildered by what fate had her take on. Spencer is realized a three-dimensional human being, sometimes frustrated with the difficulties of his disability, sometimes in love with the life he eagerly grasps. After his death, his devastated mother must once again abandon her previous expectations and dreams, and, with new insight and a fuller, wiser heart, learn to take joy in new ones.
~ Laura Moriarty, Associate Professor University of Kansas, is the author of five novels including, The Chaperone (Riverhead Books 2013), and American Heart (HarperCollins, 2018).
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