Friday, March 18, 2016

The Liar's Club by Mary Karr

The Liars' ClubThe Liars' Club by Mary Karr
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Liar’s Club is an honest, gritty memoir written by Mary Karr. Parts of this book were hard to read, parts of it were funny and silly. My book club was divided. Three of them did not even finish it, 3 of us finished it, but only two of us liked it. I think it boils down to the life experiences of each of us. We did agree that the writing was superb. The subject matter is not unheard of, but when this book was first published in 1995 it was unique. Ms. Karr does not sugar coat her childhood experiences. She does not place blame or make us hate her parents. She just tells it like it was. And it was heartbreaking. How interesting that The Liar’s Club is such a rare, honest telling of her story.
Mary and her sister, Lecia ( pronounced Lisa) endured a childhood filled with emotional pain and unbridled expectation. Their mother, Charlie Marie, struggled to find her place in the world. Southeast Texas in a slumping economy was not where she thought her future lay. So she searched for the perfect place and the perfect person to share her future with. Their father, Pete, or J.P. was a hard working ordinary kind of guy, not really up to the standards of Charlie’s expected life. He was a sort of town celebrity as he wove stories of his past and the past of the area, for the enjoyment of his friends at the American Legion.
Do not read this memoir if you are expecting a rose garden. There are only thorns in this story. Well, maybe a few daisies and a bit of green grass, but mostly a tangle of briars and bushes.
I will read the other memoirs written by Mary Karr and I want to experience her poetry also. What a talented writer.

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