Booklist Review
Raising a child is no easy task, but Batalion finds herself parenting her child as well as her own mother, who is a hoarder like her mother, Zelda, Batalion's grandmother. White Walls moves back and forth in time, from Batalion's childhood inching through a home filled with fax machines, stacks of shoes, and the like to her adulthood, including traveling the world and earning a PhD. She has escaped the hoarder's gene, she believes, and lives in a nearly empty Manhattan loft, married to Jon, oddly enough, the son of a hoarding mother himself. Here Batalion fears the items that necessarily will come with the baby, from cribs to car seats. Batalion writes in a clear, confiding tone, and her stints as a stand-up comic lend a graceful humor to her writing even as she is once again heading to her mother's home to ensure she will not, as threatened, kill herself. With her grandparents escapees from the Holocaust, Batalion ponders whether such great losses produced such great hoarders. She also ponders how to live, love, and be happy and sane. An absorbing, touching read.--Kinney, Eloise Copyright 2015 Booklist