Body Leaping Backward: Memoir of a Delinquent Girlhood

Body Leaping Backward: Memoir of a Delinquent Girlhood

by Maureen Stanton

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The “mesmerizing . . . daring and important”* story of a risk-taking girlhood spent in a working-class prison town 

*Andre Dubus III 

 

For Maureen Stanton’s proper Catholic mother, the town’s maximum security prison was a way to keep her seven children in line (“If you don’t behave, I’ll put you in Walpole Prison!").  But as the 1970s brought upheaval to America, and the lines between good and bad blurred, Stanton’s once-solid family lost its way. A promising young girl with a smart mouth, Stanton turns watchful as her parents separate and her now-single mother descends into shoplifting, then grand larceny, anything to keep a toehold in the middle class for her children. No longer scared by threats of Walpole Prison, Stanton too slips into delinquency—vandalism, breaking and entering—all while nearly erasing herself through addiction to angel dust, a homemade form of PCP that swept through her hometown in the wake of Nixon’s “total war” on drugs. 

 

Body Leaping Backward is the haunting and beautifully drawn story of a self-destructive girlhood, of a town and a nation overwhelmed in a time of change, and of how life-altering a glimpse of a world bigger than the one we come from can be.      

  

 

 

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  • Format: Hardcover

  • ISBN-13/EAN: 9781328900234

  • ISBN-10: 1328900231

  • Pages: 240

  • Price: $26.00

  • Publication Date: 07/16/2019

  • Carton Quantity: 12

M
Author

Maureen Stanton

MAUREEN STANTON, the author of Killer Stuff and Tons of Money, has been awarded the Iowa Review prize, a Pushcart Prize, the American Literary Review award in nonfiction, and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts. Stanton teaches at UMass Lowell.
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  • reviews

    “Written with sensual, poetic, and evocative prose, this remarkable memoir is an honest and naked exploration of what it means to live as a young woman in the quiet wreckage of a broken home, in a town whose central industry is punishing criminals, in a time in our history when social norms were shifting and no one seemed to be in charge, and it was so very easy to fall perilously between the cracks; Body Leaping Backward: Memoir of a Delinquent Girlhood is a deeply moving, timely, and important memoir. Read it, and you will be changed.” 

    —Andre Dubus III, author of Townie and Gone So Long  

      

    Body Leaping Backward, bursting with radiant storytelling, seamlessly sets Maureen Stanton's childhood struggles against the unraveling social tapestry that was America in the 1970s. This is a page-turning narrative that illuminates so much about her personal and our cultural darkest moments—anyone reading this memoir  will  think deeply about our current national milieu and its impact on children coming of age today.” 

    —Michael Patrick MacDonald, author of All Souls:  A Family Story from Southie 

     

Available Resources

Related Categories

  • Format: Hardcover

  • ISBN-13/EAN: 9781328900234

  • ISBN-10: 1328900231

  • Pages: 240

  • Price: $26.00

  • Publication Date: 07/16/2019

  • Carton Quantity: 12

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