Nancy Payne, January 2, 2012 (view all comments by Nancy Payne)
Growing up in East Texas (or anywhere else)in a dysfunctional family brings "fun" and very dark memories as Mary Karr describes her childhood. You won't be able to put it down!
by Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times,
"Astonishing...one of the most dazzling and moving memoirs to come along in years."
by Molly Ivins, The Nation,
"This book is so good I thought about sending it out for a backup opinion...it's like finding Beethoven in Hoboken. To have a poet's precision of language and a poet's insight into people applied to one of the roughest, toughest, ugliest places in America is an astonishing event."
by Jonathan Yardley, The Washington Post Book World,
"The essential American story...a beauty."
by San Francisco Chronicle,
"Overflows with sparkling wit and humor....Truth beats powerfully at the heart of this dazzling memoir."
by The Boston Sunday Globe,
"9mm humor, gothic wit, and a stunning clarity of memory within a poet's vision....Karr's unerring scrutiny of her childhood delivers a story confoundingly real."
When it was published in 1995, Mary Karrandrsquo;s The Liarsandrsquo; Club took the world by storm and raised the art of the memoir to an entirely new level, as well as bringing about a dramatic revival of the form. Karrandrsquo;s comic childhood in an east Texas oil town brings us characters as darkly hilarious as any of J. D. Salingerandrsquo;sandmdash;a hard-drinking daddy, a sister who can talk down the sheriff at twelve, and an oft-married mother whose accumulated secrets threaten to destroy them all. Now with a new introduction that discusses her memoirandrsquo;s impact on her family, this unsentimental and profoundly moving account of an apocalyptic childhood is as andldquo;funny, lively, and un-put-downableandrdquo; (USA Today) today as it ever was
The author, a prize-winning poet and critic, looks back at her upbringing in a swampy East Texas refinery town. She recalls her painter mother, seven times married, whose outlaw spirit could tip into psychosis; a fist-swinging father who spun tales with his cronies--dubbed the Liars' Club; and a neighborhood rape when she was eight.
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