The Ruins of California

Front Cover
Penguin, Jan 2, 2007 - Fiction - 384 pages
1 Review
For the Ruin family in 1970s California, as described by the precocious young Inez, life is complex. Her father, Paul, is self-obsessed, intrusive, and brilliant. He's also twice divorced, leaving Inez to bounce between two worlds and embracing neither-that of Paul's bohemian life in San Francisco and the more sedate world of her mother Connie, a Latin bombshell who plays tennis and attends EST seminars in the suburbs. As Inez progresses through high school we are witness to a remarkable family saga that renders a strange and fascinating slice of America in transition-one like the Ruins of California themselves, at once bold and innocent, creative and chaotic, obsessed and liberating.

What people are saying - Write a review


User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

Family saga that rises above the limits of that genre. Inez Ruin, daughter of an erstwhile flamenco dancer and a university professor, traces her family relationships from grade school to college. As ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - ennie - LibraryThing

Inez Ruin grew up in drugs/sex/rock 'n roll '70s California, shuttling between her divorced and very different parents and family members. I could not relate to the decadence, and did not really like these people. Read full review


ELEVENShelley Strelow

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2007)

Martha Sherrill is the author of The Buddha from Brooklyn, a work of nonfiction, and My Last Movie Star, a novel.

Bibliographic information