From Publishers Weekly
In 26 hit-or-miss essays, women writers provide confessions ranging from the mildly naughty (Roxana Robinson forging a parental permission slip during high school) to the grimly personal (Jennifer Gilmore suffering from acute bulimia). Few of these writers cop to behavior that is genuinely, inexcusably bad (none are currently languishing in prison), but many of these stories prove intriguing and occasionally brave, nonetheless. Joyce Maynard explains her reasons for penning a memoir about her long-ago love affair with J.D. Salinger (she calls him "Jerry"), and Laura Lipmann's hilarious tale of employee abuse recounts the months of spite-fueled work at a newspaper that produced some of her best articles. Pam Houston writes movingly of the complicated relationship she shared with her late father, and Kaui Hart Hemmings's sharp "Author Questionnaire" pokes fun at the self-involved world of San Francisco moms. Though the themes are familiar (Susan Casey's Christmastime blues especially so), and some essays could have used more fine-tuning (Tobin Levy's point gets lost among an entertaining catalog of former lovers), this is a lively assortment with enough variety to hook a wide range of readers.
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About the Author
Ellen Sussman is the author of the novel On a Night Like This. She has two daughters and lives with her husband in Los Altos Hills, California. She, too, is a bad girl.