A Manual for Cleaning Women

Selected Stories

4.16 based on 5678 ratings & 1019 reviews on Goodreads.com
Picador

Publication date: 08.10.2015
ISBN: 9781447294900
Number of pages: 0

Synopsis

The New York Times bestseller

'This selection of 43 stories should by all rights see Lucia Berlin as lauded as Jean Rhys or Raymond Carver' Independent

The stories in A Manual for Cleaning Women make for one of the most remarkable unsung collections in twentieth-century American fiction.

With extraordinary honesty and magnetism, Lucia Berlin invites us into her rich, itinerant life: the drink and the mess and the pain and the beauty and the moments of surprise and of grace. Her voice is uniquely witty, anarchic and compassionate. Celebrated for many years by those in the know, she is about to become - a decade after her death - the writer everyone is talking about. The collection will be introduced by Lydia Davis.

'With Lucia Berlin we are very far away from the parlours of Boston and New York and quite far away, too, from the fiction of manners, unless we are speaking of very bad manners . . . The writer Lucia Berlin most puts me in mind of is the late Richard Yates.' LRB, 1999

In the media

Lucia Berlin has long been overlooked as one of America's best short story writers, and it only takes readers the first couple of pages to recognize that . . . Reminiscent of Raymond Carver with a dash of survivor's humor, which makes even the bleakest tales thoroughly enjoyable.
Nylon
Berlin's writing is characterised by an enormous appetite for life, for humour and for love . . . This almost chatty style is undercut by brutal one-liners and swift reversals that, along with skilful narrative shaping, remind you that these are painstakingly crafted stories.
Guardian
A major talent . . . A testament to a writer whose explorations of society's rougher corners deserve wider attention.
Kirkus (Starred Review)