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The Female Complaint: Tales of Unruly Women

4.09  ·  Rating details ·  35 ratings  ·  11 reviews
Praised by Kirkus as "a vital addition to contemporary literature." The thirty-six stories in this anthology, all by women authors, center around female characters who follow their own paths and tell the powers-that-be what they don’t want to hear, women who stand up for themselves, for each other, for their beliefs.

The characters include housewives and high school studen
Paperback, 327 pages
Published November 1st 2015 by Shade Mountain Press
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Book Riot Community
This is an anthology of stories by woman authors, all featuring female characters who are strong in their own ways. It is an excellent mix of stories dealing with the breadth and depth of the female experience – from the dark to the lighthearted, from the mother who turns into a leopard to the librarian who struggles with the loss of her husband, from high school crushes to domestic violence. I love the concept of a collection of stories by women about women because too often the stories of wome ...more
Leigh Anne
Dec 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
A killer collection of mostly speculative tales written by and about an inclusive group of women.

Short story anthologies can be a mixed bag, but Kearns has assembled a strong set of tales here, without a clinker in the bunch. Given that these are tales of outsiders and troublemakers, I'm not surprised that so many of them contained elements of magic/magical realism/fantasy: how else can a woman gain control over her world unless she shapes a new world? Even those tales set firmly in our own univ
Oct 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This story collection artfully blends the light and the dark, the bitter and the sweet, with a delightful infusion of the strange and surreal. One story I was especially taken with was “Silted Castle Walls,” by Megan Rahija Bush, which complicates conventional notions of the “summer romance” and of any love limited by time or circumstance. But there are many additional stories in this anthology that I would highly recommend.
Mar 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
It took me awhile to get all the way through this because I would read a few essays, set it aside, and then read a few more the next week. I just finished the final entry, and I have to say, I'm really sad! I guess I'll have to find a new collection of essays to pass my ten-minute breaks at work, but I doubt the next will be this poignant.

This is unusual fare for me; I typically live for the thousand page novel that everyone else thinks is too long. Unusual and, I have to say, refreshing.

My fa
Susanna Sturgis
No, it did not take me 11 months to read this excellent collection of short stories by women. Well, yes, it did, but that wasn't the book's fault. Most novels or book-length works of nonfiction are best read over a period of days, lest one forget the beginning before one reaches the end. Not so an anthology of stories by almost three dozen writers. It's best to give each story time to stop reverberating in one's head before going on to the next. And that, I'm here to tell you, leads to gaps of d ...more
Dec 16, 2015 added it
My detailed review of this book and a shout-out to Ramona Quimby and Beverly Cleary appears on The Fiction Writers Review, www.fictionwritersreview.
Shelley Diamond
Feb 13, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: gender, literature
I was expecting to like this book more than I did. I like the concept of "unruly women" and hoped for an overall good collection of stories. Unfortunately, about two thirds of these stories failed to meet my expectation.

I DID like about a third of the stories, namely: Grave to Cradle, Stony Limits, Noelia and Amparo, Revenge on a Plate, A Big Girl has a Good Time with Small Men, Discretion, Runaway Truck Ramp, Star of the North, And the Wisdom to Know the Difference, Game Set Match, Yatri, How
Jul 31, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2016
This was an interesting compilation of stories. Each one very different from the other, and each featuring a somewhat unhinged female. A completely different sort of read.
May 28, 2021 rated it liked it
I think I would have given this four stars if I had managed to read it through in one sitting rather than such a long period of time between library checkouts. I enjoyed the first half of the collection much more than the last, and honestly, I found a number of the last several stories confusing or just not interesting. The beginning, however, there are still a handful of stories I’m still haunted by and remember fondly.
Kathleen O'Nan
Jan 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
What a great collection of short stories of women that are strong women in many, many different ways. Some are funny, some are contemplative, all are important to the genre.
Maureen Wanket
Jul 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
A story of mine is in this one, but besides that, objectively speaking, it's a wonderful collection. Each story evokes imagination and emotion. They are each so unique in voice and scope and intention. These are great stories, worthy of rereading. An ambitious and wonderful collection of stories. ...more
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Rosalie Morales Kearns, a writer of Puerto Rican and Pennsylvania Dutch descent, is the author of the novel Kingdom of Women, about a female Roman Catholic priest in an alternative near-future (Jaded Ibis Press, 2017). She’s also the author of the short story collection Virgins and Tricksters (Aqueous, 2012) and editor of the feminist short-story anthology The Female Complaint: Tales of ...more

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