The Liars’ Club is a brilliantly written memoir by Mary Karr about her tumultuous upbringing by an alcoholic mother and a largely absent father. I read this as part of my Southern Women Writers class (Karr is from Texas, though the sense of place in the book is not distinctly Southern. Not that I had any problem with that.)
Karr had a rough childhood and some parts of the memoir are hard to read. But Karr handles her struggles and traumatic experiences in a way that doesn’t romanticize them, but doesn’t punch you in the face with them either. She has a gritty, real, writing style that is incredibly appealing and a dark sense of humor that can make you smile even when the content you’re reading makes you cringe.
Like we said in class, no one wants to read about happy childhoods and happy endings, we like reading about…
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