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When Love Was Clean Underwear (Many Voices Project)by Susan Barr Toman
Synopses & Reviews
With compassion and sly humor, Barr-Toman gives us Lucy Pescitelli, a young woman from a South Philadelphia neighborhood where good Catholics still live in the houses their parents grew up in. . . . From beginning to end, I found this original, sparkling novel irresistible.-Alice Mattison, author of Nothing is Quite Forgotten in Brooklyn
Part chick lit, part Perry Mason, part laugh-out-loud-until-you-cry comedy, this is not your typical coming-of-age novel. Lucy, middle-aged, brought up sternly Catholic in South Philly, begins the novel by helping her terminally ill mother commit suicide, and later discovers sex and learns what it means to be truly alive.
Lucy, 29, works at a morgue and lives with her dying mother. She wants a life.
Lucy Pescitelli is a virgin pushing thirty, working part-time at a funeral home and still living with her mother Marge. A woman so domineering that she forces Lucy to help her commit suicide by following step-by-step instructions as if they were a recipe for deviled eggs. Now, Lucy is on her own for the first time.
The social mores of Jane Austen meet the city streets of Rocky Balboa as Lucy must negotiate a world of rigid expectations, entertain a cast of comical characters, and decide whom to marry or not in the still tradition-bound South Philadelphia of the early 1990s.
About the Author
Susan Barr-Toman received a BA from Fordham University and a MFA from the Bennington Writing Seminars. When Love Was Clean Underwear is her debut novel. She lives with her husband and two children in Philadelphia, where she teaches at Chestnut Hill College. Currently, she is at work on another novel and a series of children's books.
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