Rarely is the barbed edge of mother love described with such scorching wit and raw emotion as it is in Vivian Gornick´s reissued memoir. Fierce Attachments zigzags between a Bronx tenement teeming with immigrants in the 1940s and New York in the 1980s. It chronicles an almighty struggle between the author and her mother, a stubborn rabble-rouser bursting with tart, angry pronouncements, moxie, and an undeniable measure of charm. Waving away an ´´Eastern religionist´´ trying to sell her on his god, she raps out: ´´Young man, I am a Jew and a socialist. I think that´s more than enough for one lifetime, don´t you?´´ Her husband´s untimely death is the occasion for such wild histrionics--screaming, refusing to walk, flinging herself into the grave--that when Gornick works the Middle East years later as a journalist, the ululating cries and fainting mourners at funerals seem comfortably familiar. The rapid-fire flow of confidences and furious arguments between the duo mellow slightly, believably, as they grow older together.