Barbara the Slut and Other People

Barbara the Slut and Other People

Book - 2015
Average Rating:
6
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"A fresh, honest, and darkly funny debut collection about family, friends, and lovers, and the flaws that make us most human. Fearless, candid, and incredibly funny, Lauren Holmes is a newcomer who writes like a master. She tackles eros and intimacy with a deceptively light touch, a keen awareness of how their nervous systems tangle and sometimes short-circuit, and a genius for revealing our most vulnerable, spirited selves. In "Desert Hearts," a woman takes a job selling sex toys in San Francisco rather than embark on the law career she pursued only for the sake of her father. In "Pearl and the Swiss Guy Fall in Love," a woman realizes she much prefers the company of her pit bull--and herself--to the neurotic foreign fling who won't decamp from her apartment. In "How Am I Supposed to Talk to You?" a daughter hauls a suitcase of lingerie to Mexico for her flighty, estranged mother to resell there, wondering whether her personal mission--to come out--is worth the same effort. And in "Barbara the Slut," a young woman with an autistic brother, a Princeton acceptance letter, and a love of sex navigates her high school's toxic, slut-shaming culture with open eyes. With heart, sass, and pitch-perfect characters, Barbara the Slut is a head-turning debut from a writer with a limitless career before her"-- Provided by publisher.

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w
Wootex
Sep 15, 2016

I read the first story and the title story. Neither was engaging enough to make me want to read more.

m
msp_pier
Apr 12, 2016

I don't always read short stories, preferring long contemporary fiction reads, but this collection of ten stories by Laura Holmes was fantastic!

The prose was beautiful and I loved how developed the main characters were, even though the stories themselves were so short.

Despite the name, the book itself wasn't about "slutty" people or even about sex really, but about real people and their relationships with their parents, siblings, or lovers.

The stories give you a small glimpse into the lives of very ordinary people (and one dog), so don't expect to read any resolutions or to find any "tidy" endings. The stories aren't about that but more a character study in each of the main characters. The writing was so powerful and I connected so strongly to a majority of the characters, that each story felt complete and fulfilling enough for me.

My favorite stories were How Am I Supposed to Talk to You?, Desert Hearts, Pearl and the Swiss Guy Fall in Love, My Humans, and Barbara the Slut.

t
tiznow
Feb 23, 2016

extremely clearly written - no superfulous language.

LPL_MollyW Dec 09, 2015

More character studies than short stories, I found this collection laugh-out-loud funny. These are all people you know - and their own painfully awkward moments might even mirror your own. Witty and incisive, this is a great book for Millennials who hate being called Millennials.

a
advega718
Sep 19, 2015

A very simple, easy group of short stories with a youthful narrative. The perfect read for when you need something light.

s
StarGladiator
Aug 05, 2015

Really kind of bland. Possibly there's someone who will enjoy her writing style?

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