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Book Title: Memories of a Catholic Girlhood|
The author of the book: Mary McCarthy
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 29.74 MB
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Loaded: 2280 times
Reader ratings: 7.3
Date of issue: 1963
ISBN: No data
ISBN 13: No data
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Overall, Memories of a Catholic Girlhood presents interesting snapshots of a child, then young adult's life being raised by relatives after the death of her parents. An odd upbringing, but obviously, the only one she has to compare to in her life. Mary McCarthy was only six years old when her parents decided to move from Seattle (home of her mother's parents) to Minneapolis (home of her father's). On the train trip, the entire family became ill with the flu and Mary's parents died. This began her odyssey in search of herself and her place in her family/families.
The story is presented in somewhat fictionalized flashbacks, especially of the early years, based on her memories, with afterwords of corroborations or corrections of some details that arise out of discussions with her brothers with whom she shared the early years in Minneapolis. The years in Seattle are all from Mary's memory and have only her editorial oversight as the boys were left behind by her grandfather Preston in Minnesota and she did not see them again for years.
The title is, in some regards, a misnomer, as Mary fights off the Catholic title early on though it appears to still be part of her. She describes the daily school routines of convent school before transferring to an Episcopalian High School with her Grandfather's agreement. She becomes a very young atheist, adept at manipulating the various systems in which she must live, be it the Preston household, the convent school, the new high school or, apparently, adult life.
I liked the sections where she steps back from the stories and assesses what she has written with an authorial eye a bit less passionately. I think these sections help to make the whole gel more completely and make more sense when we do realize the youth of the original narrator.
This is an interesting memoir, speaking of a long gone era but of some things that still occur today, unfortunately. It has much to offer the right reader.
An ecopy of this book was provided by NetGalley.
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Read information about the authorMary McCarthy (1912–1989) was an American literary critic and author of more than two dozen books including the 1963 New York Times bestseller The Group. Born in Seattle, McCarthy studied at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, New York, and graduated in 1933. After moving to New York City, McCarthy became known for her incisive writing as a contributor to publications such as the Nation, the New Republic, and the New York Review of Books. Her debut novel, The Company She Keeps (1942), initiated her ascent to become one of the most celebrated writers of her generation, a reputation bolstered by the publication of her autobiography Memories of a Catholic Girlhood in 1957, as well as that of her now-classic novel The Group.
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