Dustin Lance Black wrote the Oscar-winning screenplay for Milk and helped overturn California’s anti–gay marriage Proposition 8, but as an LGBTQ activist he has unlikely origins—a conservative Mormon household in Texas. His mother, Anne, contracted polio when she was two years old. She endured brutal surgeries, as well as braces and crutches for life, and was told that she would never have children or a family. This is their story.
...a consummate storyteller, as he demonstrates in this beautifully written, vastly entertaining, and moving memoir ... Black seems incapable of writing a dull word as he evokes his stirring life and times, ultimately inspiring comity by word and example. His book belongs in every library.
As the title implies, the main subjects of Dustin Lance Black’s memoir Mama’s Boy are Black and his mother, Anne. Both have remarkable stories ... Black is very good at depicting the kind of destitution in which the smallest luxuries take on outsized meaning. He writes touchingly of the family’s annual Christmas tradition ... even now, Black’s tender and heartfelt love letter to his remarkable mother is an act of courage and reclamation. It’s a well-deserved tribute.
... touching if unfocused ... This earnest memoir is somewhat overstuffed with discussions of religion and Hollywood; the greatest appreciation will likely come from readers interested in a heartfelt look at self-acceptance as well as the complexities of family or personal stories about mending divides between liberal[s] and conservative[s].