In Brief Book Club:A Manual for Cleaning Women by Lucia Berlin
A club to explore a collection of short stories from writers new and established!
Join us for July's discussion of A Manual for Cleaning Women: Selected Stories by Lucia Berlin.
A Manual for Cleaning Women compiles the best work of the legendary short-story writer Lucia Berlin. With the wit of Lorrie Moore, the grit of Raymond Carver, and a blend of humor and melancholy all her own, Berlin crafts miracles from the everyday, uncovering moments of grace in the cafeterias and Laundromats of the American Southwest, in the homes of the Bay Area upper class, among switchboard operators and struggling mothers, hitchhikers and bad Christians.
Lovers of the short story will revel in this remarkable collection from a master of the form and wonder how they’d ever overlooked her in the first place.
"In A Manual for Cleaning Women we witness the emergence of an important American writer, one who was mostly overlooked in her time. Ms. Berlin's stories make you marvel at the contingencies of our existence. She is the real deal. Her stories swoop low over towns and moods and minds."
--Dwight Garner, The New York Times
"Some short story writers-Chekhov, Alice Munro, William Trevor-sidle up and tap you gently on the shoulder: Come, they murmur, sit down, listen to what I have to say. Lucia Berlin spins you around, knocks you down and grinds your face into the dirt. You will listen to me if I have to force you, her stories growl. But why would you make me do that, darlin'? . . . Berlin's stories are full of second chances. Now readers have another chance to confront them: bits of life, chewed up and spat out like a wad of tobacco, bitter and rich."
--Ruth Franklin, The New York Times Book Review