Dreaming: Hard Luck And Good Times In America

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University of California Press, May 5, 1996 - Biography & Autobiography - 343 pages
1 Review
In this bittersweet and beautifully written memoir Carolyn See embarks on nothing less than a reevaluation of the American Dream. "This is a history, " she writes, "of how drugs and drink have worked in our family for the last fifty - actually it turned out to be closer to a hundred - years. In varying degrees, it's history seen through a purple haze. It's full of secrets and chaos and distortions, and secretly remembered joys. I'm beginning to think it may be the unwritten history of America." Although it features a clan in which dysfunction was something of a family tradition, Dreaming is no "victim's story" or temperance tract. With a wry humor and not a trace of self-pity, See writes of fights and breakups and hard times, but also of celebration and optimism in the face of adversity. The story of See's own family speaks for the countless people who reached for the shining American vision, found it eluded their grasp, and then tried to make what they had glitter as best they could. Dreaming is about yearning, imagining, and reinventing oneself, about rolling with the punches and continuing on. In this fiercely funny and deeply empathetic book, See shows us that the wild life, for better and worse, has made us what we are.

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DREAMING: Hard Luck and Good Times in America

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

Novelist See's (Golden Days, 1986, etc.) Dreaming is a searing memoir about drinking: about her family's relationship with alcohol—eventually, with drugs as well—and, more generally, about middle ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - TimBazzett - LibraryThing

If my wife read this book, she would probably exclaim, "This is an AWful book!" And then tell me I have to read it. Because she wouldn't really mean it's "awful." She would mean that all this stuff ... Read full review


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Getting Married
Getting Married Again
Roses Story
The Embarrassing
Finding Rose
Mom Stands Pat
Peace Breaks Out 527

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About the author (1996)

Carolyn See is the author of five novels. She has a Ph.D in American literature from the University of California, Los Angeles, where she is an Adjunct Professor of English. Her awards include the Robert Kirsch Body of Work Award (1993) and a Guggenheim Fellowship in fiction.

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