Girls of Tender Age: A Memoir
REVISION: I just got this on audio cd. I liked listening to it much better then reading the text. I would now rate this at least 3.5 stars. If you could but not 4 ..so I will ...more
I love how Smith just lays it all down and does not try to explain or shine anything up. I also love how she gives brief chapters to what was happening in the life of the murderer at the same time her life was unfolding in Conn ...more
This book is so well-written, combining humor and horror, that I could hardly put it down. It is the first non-fiction book by this author....I plan to re ...more
"In 'Girls of Tender Age,' Mary-Ann Tirone Smith fully articulates with great humor and tenderness the wild jubilance of an extended French-Italian family struggling to survive in a post-World War II housing project in Hartford, Connecticut. Smith seamlessly combines a memoir whose intimacy matches that of 'Angela's Ashes' with the tale of a community plagued by a malevolent predator that holds the emotional and cultural resonance of 'The Lovely Bones.'
Smith's Hartford n ...more
The author grew up lower-middle-class in Connecticut and has a sharp-eyed way of describing things:
* "All little Catholic children are insanely envious of the children of Fatima."
* The book The Power of Positive Thinking is ...more
When a neighborhood schoolmate is murdered, the author's life, and the entire neigh ...more
This book is a pretty quick read, and a very compelling page-turner. I thought the level of detail around her friend's murde ...more
This book was a memoir, not a mystery. That's not to say it wasn't divinely interesting, bu ...more
After reading Girls, critics saw parallels between Smith's life and fiction, in particular the second novel in the Poppy Rice mystery series, She's Not There, which features a serial killer of teenage girls. Girls, at once a moving, frank, and often funny memoir, also painfully examines the evil that lurked beneath the surface of a quiet, all-American, working-class neighborhood. Smith alternates memories of her childhood with descriptions of Bob Malm's sexual predation; as an adult, she tracked...more
I aboslutely loved this memoir! I usually love reading memoirs but since I'm from CT, this particular book was extra good! You'd think that the crime aspec ...more
Mary-Ann Tirone Smith strikes the perfect balance with her moving account of her childhood. She is able to combine her memoir with a true crime book seamlessly. This book is heartbreaking on many different levels. From watching an emotionally distant mother and an autistic brother before that term was used, young Mary-Ann learns to hold in her emotions. With the murder of a neighborhood girl, and the surrounding hush that covers up the truth, Mary-Ann suppresses her emotions to the point that sh ...more
This memoir is approached with candor and humor, telling the story of the author's childhood, her autistic older brother (in the 50's, when "autism" is unheard of and he is instead referred as to retarded), and the molestation and murder of her 5th grade classmate. She and her classmates are forbidden from discussing the murder of their friend, and subsequently Smith represses the memory of it until she is well into h ...more
Her description of American culture during the post war era is priceless, and she does it with humor, touches of sarcasm, and accuracy. Then one day everything changes when a classmate is murdered. No one discusses the tragedy and the kids are left to wonder and cope on their own.
This was a very well wr ...more