Mary Karr told the prize-winning tale of her hardscrabble Texas childhood with enough literary verve to spark a renaissance in memoir. The Liar’s Club rode the top of The New York Times bestseller list for more than a year, and publications ranging from The New Yorker to People picked it as one of the best books of the year. But it left people wondering: How’d that scrappy kid make it outta there? Cherry dares to tell that story. Karr picks up the trail and dashes off into her teen years with customary sass, only to run up against the paralyzing self-doubt of a girl in bloom.
In this long-awaited sequel, we see Karr ultimately trying to run from the thrills and terrors of her sexual awakwening by butting against authority in all its forms. She lands all too often in the principal’s office and—in one instance—a jail cell. Looking for a lover or heart’s companion who’ll make her feel whole, she hooks up with an outrageous band of surfers and heads, wannabe yogis and bona fide geniuses.
Karr’s edgy, brilliant prose careens between hilarity and tragedy, and Cherry takes readers to a place never truly explored—deep inside a girl’s stormy, ardent adolescence. Parts will leave you gasping with laughter. But its soaring close proves that from even the smokiest beginnings a solid self can form, one capable of facing down all manner of monsters.
Mary Karr’s poems and essays have won Pushcart prizes and have appeared in magazines such as The New Yorker, The Atlantic, and Parnassus. She was a Bunting Fellow at Radcliffe College, and is now the Jesse Truesdale Peck Professor of English Literature at… More about Mary Karr