Excerpt from The Readers' Choice by Victoria Golden McMains, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The Readers' Choice

200 Book Club Favorites

by Victoria Golden McMains

The Readers' Choice by Victoria Golden McMains
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • Paperback:
    Jul 2000, 288 pages

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt


Rachel's rebellion has been compared to Huck Finn's brave journey in Mark Twain's HUCKLEBERRY FINN and Holden Caulfield's struggles in J. D. Salinger's THE CATCHER IN THE RYE. How similar do you think her story is to these classics?

Skirts, by Mimi Albert, Baskerville Publishers (hardcover)/p>

You may have to ask your favorite bookstore to order this book from Baskerville, but it is well worth the effort. Albert has written a mesmerizing story of three young women on their own in New York City's Greenwich Village in the early 1960s, seeking independence and excitement among the Beat Generation rather than following the home-and-motherhood route expected of most girls then.

Albert writes powerfully of the seducer and seduced as she introduces Zalman, the tall, handsome son of a rabbi, who suggests "turning on" to all of life, including drugs. He is both an alluring figure and an ominous one as he leads the particularly innocent Helene deeper and deeper into his exotic world.

Throughout the novel, Albert's language is eloquent, direct, and vividly descriptive. Interspersed through her intense, dramatic narrative are wonderfully playful bits of writing that are often hilarious.

It's surprising that twenty years elapsed between publication of Albert's first book, The Second Story Man, which was praised in a New York Times book review as "perfectly written," and the appearance of Skirts, which was a nominee for the Bay Area Book Reviewers Association Award for fiction in 1994. In the interim, Albert lived and studied in India, published short fiction, and lived and taught in northern California's wine country. Today she teaches creative writing at the University of California Extension at Berkeley and is a California Arts Council artist in residence at the National Institute of Arts and Disabilities. As of this writing, she is finishing a new novel, Through Black Seas.

Helene, Ruth, and Victoria have a common cultural heritage but seem to share little in terms of personality and goals. Do you believe in their friendship? What connects them?

Ruth is a particularly rough-edged character. Mat is it that makes you care about her?

How odd or unusual do the views that were held toward women in the early sixties seem in today's milieu?

  • 1
  • 2

Copyright Victoria Golden McMains 2000. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of the publisher, Harper Collins

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket
    My Name Is Leon
    by Kit De Waal
    Kit de Waal's striking debut, My Name is Leon, has inspired this big, long, complicated question: ...
  • Book Jacket: New People
    New People
    by Danzy Senna
    Danzy Senna has spent virtually her entire writing career exploring the complicated intersections of...
  • Book Jacket: Hunger
    Hunger
    by Roxane Gay
    In this penetrating and fearless memoir, author Roxane Gay discusses her battle with body acceptance...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
Little Nothing by Marisa Silver

A stunning, provocative new novel from New York Times bestselling author Marisa Silver

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    Young Jane Young
    by Gabrielle Zevin

    From the author of The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry comes a novel that will have everyone talking.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win The Resurrection of Joan Ashby

The Resurrection of Joan Ashby by Cherise Wolas

Epic, propulsive, incredibly ambitious, and dazzlingly written--a story about sacrifice and motherhood.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

I's A D Before D

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.