Written for Flaunt.com
Lucia Berlin reached world-wide recognition eleven years after her death with the publication of selected semi-autobiographical stories, A Manual for Cleaning Women. The book made the New York Times best-seller list in its second week and Berlin subsequently became one of America’s most influential short-story writer. From Alaska to Albuquerque, Kentucky, Mexico, New York City, California or even Chile, the author spent her life on the move and lived a life full of experiences and adventures that makes up the great tales in her books. She has been married three times, has had four sons, worked many odd jobs and had a weakness for alcohol that led her to rehab a couple times.
Farrar, Straus & Giroux is simultaneously publishing two new books by Berlin: the short-story collection Evening in Paradise and a memoir with selected photographs and letters Welcome Home.
Evening in Paradise brings together twenty-two stories not included in A Manual for Cleaning Women. These fictions share the same voice, warmth, depth and humor of the best work from prior collection.
Welcome Home is a book of previously unpublished autobiographical sketches Berlin was working on before she died in 2004. This memoir consists of more than twenty chapters, structured around each of the places she called home during her lifetime, beginning in Depression-era Alaska and ending (prematurely) in 1966 in southern Mexico.