Mary Karr Cherry: A Memoir

ISBN 13: 9780670892747

Cherry: A Memoir

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9780670892747: Cherry: A Memoir
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The author shares a candid look at her own sexual maturity growing up in a Texas town.

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As a girl idling her way through long, toxically boring summer afternoons in Leechfield, Texas, Mary Karr dreamed up an unusual career for herself, "to write one-half poetry and one-half autobiography." She has since done both, and even when she's recounting a dirty joke, she can't help but employ a poet's precise and musical vision. Her first memoir, The Liar's Club, was as searing a chronicle of family life as can be imagined--tough, funny, and crackling with sorrow and wit. Against all odds, its sequel doesn't disappoint. Cherry finds the teenage Mary still marooned in a family whose behavior ranges from charmingly eccentric to dangerously crazy. (This, for instance, is the Karr version of a note from home: "Lecia Karr's leprosy kicked in, and I had to wrap her limbs in balm and hyssop. Please excuse her.") But here the focus has shifted to Mary herself, furiously engaged in pissing off authority at every turn: flouting the dress code, dropping acid, running from the cops, falling in love.

First love, you may say, heart sinking in chest: what more can possibly be said about such a subject? Actually, a great deal. To read Cherry is to realize how rare it is to find a teenage girl portrayed on her own terms. As a chronicle of female adolescence with all its longings, fantasies, cruelties, and fears, Karr's memoir goes darker and deeper than any book in which the protagonist doesn't end up dead. She turns a savage eye on her own hypocrisies and failings, and we like her all the more for them. We even end up fond of Leechfield, easily the toughest, smelliest, nastiest little burg ever to appear between the covers of a book--"a town too ugly not to love," her father called it in The Liar's Club. Growing up in such a place is necessarily about getting the hell out, but it's also about inventing a new identity with which to make your escape. That's the blessing Karr's wise friend Meredith bestows after a particularly harrowing (and harrowingly funny) acid trip: "I see big adventures for Mary. Big adventures, long roads, great oceans: same self." Cherry is the story of how Karr begins to acquire that self, however fumblingly--a big adventure for Mary, as it is for all of us, and one we never finish as long as we live. Perhaps that's the book's greatest pleasure of all: it hints there's more to come. --Mary Park

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7 1.5-hour cassettes

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780141002071: Cherry

Featured Edition

ISBN 10:  0141002077 ISBN 13:  9780141002071
Publisher: Penguin Books, 2001
Softcover

9780786232307: Cherry: A Memoir

Thornd..., 2001
Hardcover

9780330488365: Cherry: A Memoir

Picador, 2001
Softcover

9780330485760: Cherry : A Memoir

Picador, 2002
Softcover

9780330485753: Cherry: A Memoir

Picador, 2001
Hardcover

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Karr, Mary
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Book Description Viking, 2000. Hardcover. Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: As New. 1st Edition. Karr, Mary. CHERRY. NY: Viking, c2000. First printing. 276pp, 8vo, New hardbound in d/w,. Seller Inventory # 45507

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Book Description Condition: New. Ships From Canada. New in new dust jacket. Glued binding. Paper over boards. With dust jacket. 276 p. Audience: General/trade. From Booklist The child of The Liars' Club (1995) recaptures her teenage years, starting with her leaving home at 17 in 1972, taking off from her tiny Texas town with a handful of boys and a beat-up truck heading for Los Angeles. That prologue then spirals back to earlier days in high school. Mary is dazed and confused by her lethargy in the face of her friends' needs and by her own inchoate desires, usually drowned in cheap drugs and kisses. Her friends Clarice and Meredith have heft and breadth on these pages, more so than the boys who wander through, but the true landscape is not that of friendship or lust or even Texas; it's the landscape of Mary's own thoughts. The plodding dullness of adolescent existence is punctuated by slivers and flashes of blinding illumination--indeed, Karr uses metaphors of light like carving knives. The fevered need of teens to do. Seller Inventory # 8661231870

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Karr, Mary
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Book Description Viking Books, 2000. Hard cover. Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. New in new dust jacket. Glued binding. Paper over boards. With dust jacket. 276 p. Audience: General/trade. From Booklist The child of The Liars' Club (1995) recaptures her teenage years, starting with her leaving home at 17 in 1972, taking off from her tiny Texas town with a handful of boys and a beat-up truck heading for Los Angeles. That prologue then spirals back to earlier days in high school. Mary is dazed and confused by her lethargy in the face of her friends' needs and by her own inchoate desires, usually drowned in cheap drugs and kisses. Her friends Clarice and Meredith have heft and breadth on these pages, more so than the boys who wander through, but the true landscape is not that of friendship or lust or even Texas; it's the landscape of Mary's own thoughts. The plodding dullness of adolescent existence is punctuated by slivers and flashes of blinding illumination--indeed, Karr uses metaphors of light like carving knives. The fevered need of teens to do things that are bad for them, over and over, lies twinned at the heart of this fiercely recalled memoir, alongside a slippery, cloudy, thick delineation of desire. Few people have written so luxuriantly about kissing as Karr, or what kissing could be and do all by itself. She allows us glimpses of what happened later to these people, in small doses, just enough to remind us what memory and time can do. GraceAnne DeCandido Copyright American Library Association. All rights reserved Kirkus Review, September 1, 2000 Energized by Karr's sharp wit, this tale of Texas adolescence reads like a fast-paced novel. Tucson Weekly Readers familiar with The Liar's Club.will welcome back the enchanting voice of Mary Karr. Book Description From Mary Karr, author of the bestselling The Liars' Club: the vibrant--often hilarious--story of her tumultuous teens and sexual coming-of-age Mary Karr told the prizewinning tale of her hardscrabble Texas childhood with enough literary verve to spark a renaissance in memoir. The Liars' Club rode the top of The New York Times bestseller list for more than a year, and publications rang. Seller Inventory # 0002246

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Karr, Mary
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Book Description Viking Adult, 2000. Hardcover. Condition: New. Never used!. Seller Inventory # P110670892742

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Book Description Viking Adult, Penguin, NYC, 2000. Soft cover. Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. 1st Edition. RARE Advance Reading Copy-Uncorrected Proof-Not For Sale. 1st Edition-Per ABE Books. All ARC's are 1st Printings though no information is given. NEW Unread Copy. Trade paperback format. BEAUTIFUL copy of Book & Cover. COLLECTOR'S COPY. Seller Inventory # 002848

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