Calliope Writing


#FridayBookShare – Lauren Holmes’s ‘Barbara the Slut and Other People’

Welcome to another edition of Friday Book Share.

#fridaybookshare readers books recommendation

The Book: Barbara the Slut and Other People by Lauren Holmes

This was the last book I completed, and it was a blast to read. It’s a collection of ten stories, each focused on one primary character. “Desert Hearts,” “My Humans,” and “Barbara the Slut” were my favorites.

First line of the book

From the story “How Am I Supposed to Talk to You?”

In Mexico City the customs light lit up green, which was lucky because I had fifty pairs of underwear with tags on them in my suitcase.

Recruit fans by adding the book blurb

They called Barbara other names – ho, whore, skank, Barbara Lewinsky, sticky-fingers Murphy – but mostly they called her slut. But Barbara does not let these words define her. Instead she defines herself. She is a teenager with an autistic brother, a Princeton acceptance letter and a love of sex, navigating her high school’s toxic, slut-shaming culture with open eyes.

Lauren Holmes introduces us to a parade of people (and one dog), so familiar we might know them, might even be them. A woman who prefers the company of her pit bull to the neurotic foreign fling who won’t decamp from her flat. A law school grad who takes a job selling sex toys rather than embarking on the career she pursued for her father’s sake. A daughter who hauls a suitcase of lingerie to Mexico for her estranged mother to resell, wondering whether her personal mission – to come out – is worth the same effort.

Fearless, candid and incredibly funny, Barbara the Slut tackles sex, family and relationships with a keen awareness for how their nervous systems tangle and sometimes short-circuit. With a genius – and a deceptively light touch – for revealing our most vulnerable, spirited, flawed selves, Lauren Holmes is a newcomer who writes like a master.

Introduce the main character using only three words

Since there are ten, I’ll focus on the title character: Barbara.

  • Vulnerable
  • Fearless
  • Loner

Delightful Design (the book’s cover image)

friday book share recommendations lauren holmes

friday book share recommendations

Audience appeal (who would enjoy this book?)

Readers who have a raunchy sense of humor and an appreciation for the raw, gritty side of life.

Your favorite line/scene

My favorite scene is from “Barbara the Slut” and involves Barbara and her autistic brother, George.

friday book share recommendations lauren holmes

Have any of you read this kickass book? If so, share your thoughts below.

*Heads up: if you click on the links to purchase any of the mentioned books from Amazon, know that I’m an affiliate. Your purchase will help me keep this blog going (i.e., I’ll earn money to buy books that I will then write about).*

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