Picks and Pans Review: Cherry
by Mary Karr
Great expectations preceded Cherry, Karr's second memoir. After all, its predecessor, 1995's dazzling The Liars' Club, an account of her hardscrabble Texas childhood, virtually jump-started the latest memoir craze.
Happily, Cherry delivers. Karr still has her delicious knack for making you guffaw through horrible events, but this volume, which focuses on her adolescence in the late '60s and early '70s, is decidedly sunnier than its predecessor. There are vivid evocations of young desire—at one vulnerable moment, her whole body starts to hum like a "locust singing inside its husk"—and memorable characters. Unfortunately the book starts to drag as Karr becomes increasingly drug-addled in her teen years. Is Cherry as good as The Liars' Club? Not quite, but its humor, warmth and crackling language should keep Karr's fans hungering for another round. (Viking, $24.95)
Bottom Line: Funny, insightful memoir of a hippie teenhood
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