Although many vibrant characters populate this chilling memoir, Norris' re-creation of her early 1960s nine-year-old self is a spot-on treat and a terror. Although she is determined not to be cowed or undermined by her often cruel, scheming, and drunken dad, Jimmy (like older half sister Virginia and nice mother Shirley), her telling ratchets up a spooky, excruciating tension. The racist, misogynistic Jimmy is a loaded gun, ready to fire at nearly anything for any reason. Yet it's his best friend, Hank, who blows, murdering his ex-wife and another man. Thus does young Norris' brightest spot and mentor her older friend Susan, Hank's daughter land in a mental hospital, over and over, while Hank goes free. Norris compellingly leads readers through her young life, alternately loving, fearing, and hating her father (the latter two with especially good reason), and it's a bravely faced and remembered coming-of-age that segues into Norris' amazing comeback as a filmmaker and writer who never forgets her mentor, Susan. A tumble through a tumultuous time, in which the heroine inexplicably, beautifully lands on her feet.--Kinney, Eloise Copyright 2015 Booklist
Kookooland by Gloria Norris at the library and join us on January 17th at 1pm by the fireplace. Should be an interesting read with Manchester as the setting.