Mother’s Day in the Empire State – Paperback


Mother’s Day in the Empire State, Or An Answer to the Arraignment of Women is Free-Grace Press’s powerful second novel, penned by Constantia “Connie” Munda as a response to Joseph Swetnam’s 1615 miso nist pamphlet. Set as a deposition novel discovered in the Public Records of the Allegheny Family Court, it delves into three distinct stories of motherhood in America.

Munda critically examines the concept of motherhood. Drawing inspiration from the original intent of Mother’s Day by Anna Jarvis in 1906 as an anti-war holiday, the novel challenges the sentimentalized view of motherhood propagated by modern society. With its unique structure, blending free-verse prose, satirical elements, and a nonlinear narrative, the novel stands out as a blend of tragic-comedy and theater of the absurd.

Set in the fictional town of Allegheny in the New York Empire State, Munda, a single mother and veteran military intelligence officer turned Child Protection Services officer, investigates two mothers accused of child abuse. The novel provides a raw, unflinching look at the challenges faced by mothers in both poverty and luxury, highlighting the grim state of American children today.

This second installment in Free-Grace Press’s five-novel series about free-grace philosophy is a timely and essential read, challenging readers to rethink societal understanding of motherhood in today’s day and age.



“Part narrative, part court case, the hybridity of Mother’s Day in the Empire State brings the reader closer to the true experience of family pain than either form could on its own. We watch as the law, with its rigid, “rational” understanding of human behavior, tries to contain and punish generational trauma, while history, both personal and global, defies all attempts at control. Ribbons of poetry bump up against cold fact, hand-drawn images become court exhibits. This book is a battle between logic and emotion, life and death. Its strangeness will linger.” —Dr. Rachel Abramowitz

“An engaging work investigating two complaints of child abuse through the testimony of a CPS officer, told as an enduring record of evidence. Quite literally, this book takes the form of a deposition transcript to the Family Court of New York State. … Through vivid satire, word play, a lucid sense of self-awareness, and an acute awareness of the world Munda denounces child abuse, confronts the methodology of the family, and questions the reach of patriarchy. This is an excellent book and I, too, find myself looking to the heavens and exclaiming, “AAAaaammmen!” —Geoffrey Gatza

“The retort to a 1615 pamphlet takes the form of illustrations, speeches, and winding monologues in the style of texts such as Notes from the Underground. It’s a hypnotic blend that will keep you turning the pages!” —Dr. Kyle McCord, author of Reunion of the Good Weather Suicide Cult

Additional information


ISBN 978-1-7321669-0-5 (audio book)
ISBN 978-1-7321669-1-2 (hard cover)
ISBN 978-1-7321669-2-9 (paperback)
ISBN 978-1-7321669-3-6 (ebook)


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