A Bad and Stupid Girl (Michigan Literary Fiction Awards)

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9780472115808: A Bad and Stupid Girl (Michigan Literary Fiction Awards)

Siri is a legacy admission, rich and spoiled and destined to flunk out of her freshman year at college. Esther, her roommate, is a scholarship student from humble means, brilliant and driven to succeed.
 
Brought together by chance, the girls soon become partners in a struggle to find their way in a world where neither Esther’s brains nor Siri’s beauty is enough. Never having been forced to work hard at anything, Siri must rely on Esther to teach her to learn and attend class. But as Siri wakes from her dream world to discover the life of the mind, Esther begins shedding her rational bonds to explore the mysteries of the soul. For both, some of the most devastating lessons in the attainment of worldly knowledge come from love.
 
Deadpan funny and bittersweet, A Bad and Stupid Girl is above all else a moving portrait of two friends helping each other to uncover the potential splendor of their lives. Jean McGarry is the author of six previous books of fiction: Airs of Providence, The Very Rich Hours, The Courage of Girls, Home at Last, Gallagher's Travels, and Dream Date. She is a professor of fiction at The Writing Seminars at Johns Hopkins University. A Bad and Stupid Girl is her third novel.
 
 
 
Jean McGarry's novel is a lovely locket of a book, with the picture inside not at all faded. Focused in close-up, succinct and convincing, it's a story about friendship and maturation, and about how our studies, alone, do not define us.”
Ann Beattie
 
Jean McGarry’s A Bad and Stupid Girl is an uncommonly Good and Bright-Indeed Novel, sharply written from start to finish and entertaining as Hell.”
John Barth
 
Everything in life is arbitrary yet must be over-determined in literature. Jean McGarry knows how to tell a persuasive tale illuminating these truths.”
Harold Bloom
 
 

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About the Author:

Jean McGarry is the author of six previous books of fiction: Airs of Providence, The Very Rich Hours, The Courage of Girls, Home at Last, Gallagher's Travels, and Dream Date. She is a professor of fiction at The Writing Seminars at Johns Hopkins University. A Bad and Stupid Girl is her third novel.

From Publishers Weekly:

Two girls-one beautiful, one smart-are drawn together by their reciprocal need for what the other has. It's the 1970s, and Siri Sorenson, beautiful and rich, leaves the suburbs of fictional state "New Federal" for St. Mary's college, dropped off by the family she's grown to despise. Esther Ferry arrives with a scholarship and a set of cheap bedspreads, which her mother dutifully places on the two twin beds in the small dorm room. Thrown together among strict nuns and clueless girls, and lacking any real sophistication themselves, they become friends. Johns Hopkins professor of fiction McGarry (Airs of Providence) makes the tension left by the sexual revolution and the feminist movement as palpable as the brick buildings of the university. Siri longs for Esther's intelligence, and absorbs any stray ideas that come her way, while Esther becomes a recalcitrant student, refusing to "read and spill." Sex complicates matters considerably. The descriptions of the girls' developing intelligence can seem overwrought, but when McGarry moves out of her character's minds, beautiful and vivid scenes emerge, like this Christmas vacation exchange between Siri and her father: "I'm not going to ask you why you bit your brother, Siri." "Good." "Because I know you don't know why." This book is a winning reminder for nostalgic adults of just how horrible 18 could really be.
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Book Description The University of Michigan Press, United States, 2006. Hardback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Siri is a legacy admission, rich and spoiled and destined to flunk out of her freshman year at college. Esther, her roommate, is a scholarship student from humble means, brilliant and driven to succeed. Brought together by chance, the girls soon become partners in a struggle to find their way in a world where neither Siri s beauty nor Esther s brain is enough. Never having been forced to work hard at anything, Siri must rely on Esther to teach her to learn and attend class. But as Siri wakes from her dream world to discover the life of the mind, Esther begins shedding her rational bonds to explore the mysteries of the soul. For both, some of the most devastating lessons in the attainment of worldly knowledge come from love. Deadpan funny and bittersweet, A Bad and Stupid Girl is above all else a moving portrait of two friends helping each other to uncover the potential splendor of their lives. Bookseller Inventory # AAN9780472115808

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Book Description The University of Michigan Press, United States, 2006. Hardback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . This book usually ship within 10-15 business days and we will endeavor to dispatch orders quicker than this where possible. Brand New Book. Siri is a legacy admission, rich and spoiled and destined to flunk out of her freshman year at college. Esther, her roommate, is a scholarship student from humble means, brilliant and driven to succeed. Brought together by chance, the girls soon become partners in a struggle to find their way in a world where neither Siri s beauty nor Esther s brain is enough. Never having been forced to work hard at anything, Siri must rely on Esther to teach her to learn and attend class. But as Siri wakes from her dream world to discover the life of the mind, Esther begins shedding her rational bonds to explore the mysteries of the soul. For both, some of the most devastating lessons in the attainment of worldly knowledge come from love. Deadpan funny and bittersweet, A Bad and Stupid Girl is above all else a moving portrait of two friends helping each other to uncover the potential splendor of their lives. Bookseller Inventory # BTE9780472115808

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Book Description The University of Michigan Press, United States, 2006. Hardback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Siri is a legacy admission, rich and spoiled and destined to flunk out of her freshman year at college. Esther, her roommate, is a scholarship student from humble means, brilliant and driven to succeed. Brought together by chance, the girls soon become partners in a struggle to find their way in a world where neither Siri s beauty nor Esther s brain is enough. Never having been forced to work hard at anything, Siri must rely on Esther to teach her to learn and attend class. But as Siri wakes from her dream world to discover the life of the mind, Esther begins shedding her rational bonds to explore the mysteries of the soul. For both, some of the most devastating lessons in the attainment of worldly knowledge come from love. Deadpan funny and bittersweet, A Bad and Stupid Girl is above all else a moving portrait of two friends helping each other to uncover the potential splendor of their lives. Bookseller Inventory # AAN9780472115808

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