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Short Synopsis
Karen Dietrich's lyrical, absorbing memoir traces her coming of age in a small factory town near Pittsburgh.

Full Synopsis
It's 1985 in a small factory town near Pittsburgh. Eight-year-old Karen's parents are lifelong workers at the Anchor Glass plant, where one Saturday, an employee goes on a shooting spree, killing four supervisors, then himself. This event splits the young girl's life open, and like her mother, she begins to seek comfort in obsessive rituals and superstitions.

This beautifully evocative memoir chronicles the next fourteen years, as Karen moves through girlhood, adolescence, and young adulthood. It illuminates small-town factory life; explores a complicated mother-daughter bond; thoughtfully unfolds a smart but insecure girl's coming of age; achingly recounts her attempts to use sex to fit in; and ultimately uncovers the buried secret from her childhood—a medical file with an unbearable report.

The Girl Factory deftly travels the intersections of memory and origin. Karen's body remembers details her mind has tried to control. As the young woman mines her interior landscape for answers, certain questions persist. Where does memory live—in the body or the mind? And can you rewrite the story of your past?

"Campbell is pitch-perfect when narrating the male and female bullies who make Dietrich's life a misery, reading their dialogue with the right combination of snarkiness, youthful cruelty, and disdain, which makes
the listener cringe." ---Booklist Audio Review

"Cassandra Campbell's deliberate, rhythmic tone accentuates the feeling of melancholy that permeates Dietrich's account." ---Library Journal Audio Review

"This book is stunning---a glinting, piercing wonder." ---Paula McLain, author of The Paris Wife

"Dietrich works beautifully by understatement, allowing her subtle clues to paint a terrifying world for the innocent protagonist." ---Publishers Weekly

"Karen Dietrich brings an original voice to her indelible tale." ---Janice Erlbaum, author of Girlbomb

"Exquisitely written in delicious language and detail; Dietrich's The Girl Factory evokes the best kind of memoir writing." ---Domingo Martinez, author of The Boy Kings of Texas

The Girl Factory

A Memoir

Author Karen Dietrich

Narrated by Cassandra Campbell

Publication date Oct 1, 2013

Running time 8 hrs 26 min

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