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Bearded Lady (Kindle Single) by [Altman, Mara]
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Bearded Lady (Kindle Single) Kindle Edition

4.1 out of 5 stars 234 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

"Under the withering California sun, they wouldn't stop making a spectacle of themselves." There begins Mara Altman's comic odyssey to understand and eradicate the hair that won't stop growing on various, unexpected parts of her body--there, there, there, and yes, even there. There isn't a woman alive who won't identify with Altman and her plight. With uproarious self-deprecation and charming wit, the former Village Voice staff writer takes us from puberty to the present in a brave personal narrative that balances reporting and revelation. Not since Nora Ephron's classic A Few Words About Breasts has a writer been so achingly honest--or hilarious--about the cruel tricks nature can play on the female body.--Simone Gorrindo

About the Author

After graduating from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, Mara Altman worked as a staff writer for The Village Voice until 2007. In 2009, HarperCollins published Altman's first book, Thanks For Coming: A Young Woman's Quest for an Orgasm, which was optioned as a comedy series by HBO. She has also written for New York Magazine and The New York Times.

Product Details

  • File Size: 133 KB
  • Print Length: 46 pages
  • Publication Date: March 7, 2012
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007II00XE
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #207,845 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Mara Altman's latest is probably the funniest thing I've read since...Sparkle. I literally laughed out loud alone in my apartment from start to finish. This is exactly what every woman wishes she could say but is entirely too terrified to do it. She's even more honest in her writing than I am in my own head. She dares to do what none of us will and it's bold, to say the least. If you're a woman, if you have hair, if you're just looking to laugh yourself to sleep, please don't miss out on this. It's brilliant.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
For women, there is a quest to be hairless and fuzz free, smooth and beautiful, but some of us just have it harder than others. The author is coming clean here, confessing to her soon-to-be husband (and to us) that she is more than she appears; she is a bearded lady in disguise. She even discloses the little happy trail and the nipple hair dilemma, and I had a good laugh at that.

As a woman who unfortunately also has an absurd amount of body hair herself, I found great humor and sympathy in this kindle single. I laughed and I identified way too much with Altman's struggle. I was feeling her pain. Her story is very personal and funny and bold. And what I see most of all in this memoir is a camaraderie among women, that laugh at you and at me, as we see and recognize a piece of ourselves and our own hapless vanity.

I was amazed at her bravery and gutsy honesty. Altman just let it all out, the truth in all its natural and hairy glory for everyone to see, and I appreciated that. The writing here is kind of tongue in cheek but still sharp. Even as certain details are painfully embarrassing, there is still an almost gentle, have-a-laugh-at-my-expense humor to the piece. Smart and funny writing with a drollness to it, this kindle single is very enjoyable, and I couldn't help but see myself in it.

Note: 780 kindle locations, and there is some adult language within.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I bought this book based on reviews that its funny. I wanted to read a comic book as a break. Don't get be wrong, she starts with humor narrating her experiences, trauma, and struggle of every women, the unwanted body hairs. But then, she deviates from her personal narration of her experiences to interviews. She gets into peoples opinion why is it ok or not ok to remove hairs and tries to get into history of hair removal etc. At this point when she starts interviewing, the book becomes boring, shallow and just an opinionated view of various people from beauty editors to academic professors. The book loses its humor and becomes a drag. Had she stayed and elaborated her personal experiences, the book would have been much better. The interviews and loose research on history of hair loses its charm. I gave her 3 stars because her narration at the beginning is so at ease to follow. As a audience I don't lose her as a story teller. She speaks to me directly at the beginning in funny ways but then she loses it midway and becomes boring towards the end.

I finished the book from start to finish in less than 2 hours on a Sunday afternoon. It is a short read.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Mara has a way of turning our painful secrets into hilarious truths! Even the hairs on my chiny, chin, chin enjoyed this journey.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I may be one of the few guys that have read this book, but the good reviews and interesting topic (not to mention quick read) lured me in to want to check it out. And I'm glad I did. The author is hilarious and I found that I greatly enjoyed this short book. First off, I know what it is like to be hairy, but do not have the opposite experience of being a woman and the social pressures of being clean shaven everywhere all of the time. My wife is not a hairy woman, but one consequence of my genetics is that my daughters are all fairly hairy at a young age, and this book may have been a glimpse of what is to come for each of them. Overall, this is a thoroughly enjoyable book.
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Format: Kindle Edition
This extended essay (it's too short to be called a book) is one of the most personally meaningful, empowering things I've ever read. Please don't ask me why. It's embarrassing to say.
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By Doris on March 10, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
I had not heard of Mara Altman until I was browsing for funny books on my kindle. This book was awesome. Honest and realistic. I kept getting funny looks from my boyfriend when I would start to giggle. When I burst out laughing several times I think he thought I'd lost my mind. If you need a good laugh read this book! Loved the research and interesting facts Altman included. Radiation for hair removal. Really? Crazy!
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Like Sparkle, this long essay provides a nice balance between personal story and researched information, but the history and investigative reporting came late in this essay, and I would have liked more of it. She quickly skims over ancient Rome and Egypt, for instance, and I would have loved to have lingered there longer to learn more about their practices. I learned things I had no idea about, like women using dangerous radiation in the 20th century to get rid of hair--fascinating passage. I also would have appreciated information for the ignorant (me and men, I guess) on things like "threading." She never described it or defined it, as she really didn't describe any of the actual procedures, like pubic waxing and electrolysis, and I simply would have liked more detail and explanation for the uninitiated. But overall a good, smart, informative, thought-provoking, brave read that manages to be light, fun reading, too.
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