Book Review: Childless


I always wanted to have children. The earth might be in trouble—overpopulated, descending into ecological crisis—but I was always sure my kids would help make the world a better place. I would be a green-feminist supermum, having it all. Nothing turned out the way I expected. 

Like many women, Sian Prior arrived at the point where she was ready to start having babies—and found they were not hers to have. After all this Sian found herself, at fifty, childless and coming to terms. Weighing up the freedoms against the losses. Dealing with the unacknowledged legacy of her own lost father. Observing parenthood itself—how we succeed at it and how we fail—from a perspective outside the trenches. 


‘I always assumed it was a matter of when, not if, I would have a child.’

Childless by Sian prior is a book of longing and freedom- as told on the cover. But in actuality, this book is about all the hidden strengths and courage a woman can must up when she decides to end her seven-year quest for motherhood.

Childless is Sian’s second memoir, which dives deep into the heartbreak of not being able to have what you thought would always be yours. It is about her heavy journey that should have supported a better destination, except it did not.

Going by the rave reviews, I had anticipated a five-star read. But I soon realised that this book was beyond any rating spectrum when I flipped to the last page. You cannot rate somebody’s unimaginable trauma or pain, can you? This important book raises awareness about a woman’s endless despair when her own body fails to listen to her. Sian has sensitively expressed her disappointments about not being able to have a child she was always meant to have and the eventual acceptance of the reality that spoke otherwise. We know about many famous books that touch on the theme of motherhood, but not many on missed motherhood. Childless is that book!

It is one thing to deal with your grief and entirely another when you’re grappling with the right words to express that agony. And yet, Sian has done an exceptional job of sharing her personal experience through short, concise essays and the aftereffects this event has had on her life. I can’t imagine how vulnerable she must have been while writing this memoir, but I’m grateful to her for writing a book that resonates with the ones silently hurting.

Childless was published on 29th March 2022 by Text Publishing. You can purchase the book here.

AuthorSian Prior
PublisherText Publishing
List Price34.99 AUD

To read our interview with the author Sian Prior, click here.