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When it was published in 1995, Mary Karr’s The Liars’ Club took the world by storm and raised the art of the memoir to an entirely new level, as well as bringing about a dramatic revival of the form. Karr’s comic childhood in an east Texas oil town brings us characters as darkly hilarious as any of J. D. Salinger’s—a hard-drinking daddy, a sister who can talk down the sheriff at twelve, and an oft-married mother whose accumulated secrets threaten to destroy them all. Now with a new introduction that discusses her memoir’s impact on her family, this unsentimental and profoundly moving account of an apocalyptic childhood is as “funny, lively, and un-put-downable” (USA Today) today as it ever was.
New York Times, Dinitia Smith, 1995

Michiko Kakutani, New York Times, 1995

“This book is so good I thought about sending it out for a back-up opinion … it’s like finding Beethoven in Hoboken. To have a poet’s precision of language and a poet’s insight into people applied to one of the roughest, toughest, ugliest places in America is an astonishing event.”
— Molly Ivins, The Nation

“The essential American story. A beauty.”
— Jonathan Yardley, Washington Post Book World

“Overflows with sparkling wit and humor… Truth beats powerfully at the heart of this dazzling memoir.”
— San Francisco Chronicle

“Elegiac and searching… her toughness of spirit, her poetry, her language, her very voice are the agents of rebirth on this difficult, hard-earned journey.”
— Sheila Ballantyne, New York Times Book Review

“A dazzling, devastating memoir… Karr’s voice never falters or rings false.”
— Vogue

“Karr lovingly retells [her parents’] best lies and drunken extravagances with an ear for bar-stool phraseology and a winking eye for image. The revelations continue to the final page, with a misleading carelessness as seductive as any world-class liar’s.”
— The New Yorker

“Funny, lively, and un-put-downable.”
— USA Today

“Bold, blunt, and cinematic… nothing short of superb.”
— Margot Mifflin, Entertainment Weekly

“An astonishing memoir of a ferociously loving and dysfunctional family… Karr uses the rich cadence of the region and poetic images to shape her wrenching story.”
— People

“Captivating, hilarious, and heartfelt.”
— Cyra McFadden, Los Angeles Times
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