Excerpt: 'Someone Not Really Her Mother'

"Someone Not Really Her Mother" is part of "Good Morning America's" "Read This!" series. Read an excerpt from the book posted below.

This latest installment in "GMA's" book series was chosen by Roxanne Coady of the R.J. Julia Booksellers (www.rjjulia.com) in Madison, Connecticut. Roxanne and her staff read close to 100 books before they chose Someone Not Really Her Mother for the "Read This!" book club selection.

Read the following excerpt from "Someone Not Really Her Mother" by Harriet Scott Chessman.


Morning here is not like any mornings Hannah Pearl has ever known. First, the young woman with hair the color of honey comes in. Her hair spills out of the barrette. She's wearing a blue -- uniform.

"Upsy-daisy, Hannah!" she says, raising Hannah's bed. "Here's your glasses!" She opens them up and puts them on Hannah's nose. "And here's your medicine." On the young woman's uniform is a small -- something -- with Roxie on it. Of course she is Roxie. Hannah swallows her pills, one at a time, with water.

On this morning, the young woman -- how is she called? -- adds, "You're having a visitor today, Hannah." She smiles as she flips Hannah's quilt off, and her sheets. "Time for the bathroom."

One arm behind Hannah's back, one holding Hannah's right hand, the young woman pulls her upright. Slowly, Hannah sits on the edge of the bed. The young woman bends to pull on Hannah's slippers, her honeyed hair almost touching Hannah's knees.

"All set, Hannah. Now here's your walker."

"Merci, mademoiselle."

"I love it when you call me that! Mademoiselle. I've got to get my boyfriend to call me that, it's so elegant." She holds Hannah's elbow gently.

Hannah holds on to the silver handles and walks slowly to the bathroom. The young woman helps Hannah sit on the toilet. While she waits for Hannah, she looks into the mirror quickly, and tucks a strand of hair around her ear.

"Sharon will come give you your shower in a few minutes. So don't you want to know who your visitor will be, Hannah?"

The young woman says Hannah like hand, with an h bold and blowing, just like that, and an a flat, like a marsh. Hannah is used to this, but privately she thinks of her name as having an h only when you write it. When you say Hannah, the word should open up at first, with no h at all, just a lovely "Ah!" and then another one. "Ahnah!" with more fullness to the second "ah." How to tell the young woman this? "Hannah? Don't you want to know who's coming?"

Hannah thinks of a rhyme. Who's to visit Mrs. Pearl, Mrs. Pearl? A doctor, a something, a something, an earl. She is worried about splashing the floor, so she concentrates on making a single stream as the young woman -- how is she called? -- stands close by now, touching her shoulder. Hannah also likes the other one, with the warm voice, who sings. Her voice makes Hannah think of something her mother used to make -- something warm and sweet, with pears. That one billows the new sheets like wings, like parachutes, as she sings.

"Hannah? Did you hear me?" The young woman is squatting down in front of Hannah now, smiling. "Your daughter's coming this morning! She comes every week, right? She isn't from France, like you, though, is she?"

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