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The Last of the Live Nude Girls: A Memoir Paperback – August 9, 2011
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"The most compelling aspect of Last of the Live Nude Girls is that it illustrates just how easily one can wind up living a life outside the margins." Portland Mercury
"McClear writes about her secret peep-show existence with the ribald expertise of a natural storyteller, but it’s her deeper exploration, into the motivations behind her actions, that makes the book both memorable and highly relevant." -Daily Beast
"Sheila McClear's sharp, sweetly personal account of New York's vanished tenderloin asks the question if such supposedly degrading places are such a blight, why do we remember them with such fondness? A fascinating and honest read." Mark Jacobson, author of The Lampshade andAmerican Gangster
"McClear is most convincing and most moving, in fact, on the complex relationship between the sex trade and her own frustrated sex life." -Public Books
"Sheila McClear's beautifully detailed account of her life as a peep-show girl reads as both a eulogy and a paean to the freaks and misfits who have long given their souls to the city. Filled with psychological insight, metaphor, and above all empathy, this book should be read by anyone who has ever taken or even contemplated extreme measures to escape the pain and tedium of life, with the hope of finding some meaning or redemption along the way." Matthew Gallaway, author of The Metropolis Case
Ms. McClear’s closeness to the material most enriches her reporting when it comes to her coworkers. Despite their outsized personalities, they could have wound up sounding as interchangeable as their stage names, but with Ms. McClear’s writing, even their tattoos are memorable. Their substance abuse becomes familiar, occasionally even endearing, in a madcap way. Ms. McClear also has a keen ear for dialogue.” New York Observer
Sheila McClear is a reminder that kids can still arrive in New York City from Nowheresville and break in with some serious grit, hard work, and talent.” Out Magazine
"Everyone is required to buy two copies." Gawker
"Eye-opening, gritty, and compelling." The Paris Review Online
"A collection of disciplined and rewarding New York tales." -The L Magazine
About the Author
Top customer reviews
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For that reason alone, this book is valuable -- just to get into the mind set of why a young, intelligent woman would take up this lifestyle. McClear explains that and so much more in clear, engaging prose that draws you into a world most of us would shun. It is dark, sometimes depressing, funny, touching -- in short, the gamut of human emotions.
Her writing seems to grow as the book unfolds until the last few paragraphs which are absolutely entrancing. I'm glad she made her way out of there to a lifestyle she might have thought impossible back then.
Now a writer for the New York Post, Ms. McClear has put together a book which brings the world she formerly lived in to the curious reader, especially those who walked past those establishments often but never really understood what they were about or the way the job impacted the women and distorted their worldview.
So well written that I couldn't put stop reading, I soon identified with the author as she changed into a street smart victim of this unique lifestyle. Nobody forced her to do this. She made her choices herself. And, for a while she enjoyed it but was wise enough to leave when she saw the effect it had her.
There are also sections of the book about this sleaze business in general and the history of the politics of New York regarding this kind of entertainment. I loved this book and heartily recommend it.
I hope she will write MORE!
I can't recommend this book because I can't promise anyone they'll walk away with anything after they read it. Then again, apparently the other reviewers enjoyed it, and so far I seem to be the only voice of dissension. It seems ironic that the writing, the author, the bio, the experience of reading Live Nude Girls mirrors the tone of the book itself. Flat, disassociated. Just like some of her customers were satisfied with what they paid for and some felt shortchanged.
Most recent customer reviews
Needs a good editor. Repetitive.Read more