Rat Girl

Rat Girl : A Memoir

3.92 (2,421 ratings by Goodreads)
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The founder of a cult rock band shares her outrageous tale of growing up much faster than planned.
In 1985, Kristin Hersh was just starting to find her place in the world. After leaving home at the age of fifteen, the precocious child of unconventional hippies had enrolled in college while her band, Throwing Muses, was getting off the ground amid rumors of a major label deal. Then everything changed: she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and found herself in an emotional tailspin; she started medication, but then discovered she was pregnant. An intensely personal and moving account of that pivotal year, Rat Girl is sure to be greeted eagerly by Hersh's many fans.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 319 pages
  • 137.16 x 208.28 x 22.86mm | 272.15g
  • New York, NY, United States
  • English
  • Reprint
  • 0143117394
  • 9780143117391
  • 64,176

Review quote

""Rat Girl" is the story of a wide-eyed soul coming to maturity in the ridiculous cacophony of modern life. Although it is supposedly about what we call, for lack of a better term, 'manic depression, ' it has nearly no interest in such grim diagnostic thinking. It is instead awestruck - by music, feeling, perception, wild animals, mystery, dreams, 'the gorgeous and terrible things that live in your house.' It is an original beauty." - Mary Gaitskill, author of "Veronica" and "Don't Cry"
"Sensitive and emotionally raw... it is also wildly funny." - Rob Sheffield, "New York Times Book Review" "Funny, freaky, fidgety, Hersh's memoir is the book a fan didn't dare hope for: a beacon in a dark field, illuminating the mysterious and the mundane. Beautifully, honestly, written and as close as you will ever get to being in a Throwing Muses song." - Wesley Stace, author of "Misfortune" and "By George" #8 on Rolling Stone's list of The 25 Greatest Rock Memoirs of All Time "Her narrative voice is warm, friendly and surprisingly funny. Deep down it's a story about messed-up kids finding one other, starting a band, and accidentally scrounging up an audience of similarly messed-up kids. It belongs on the shelf next to Michael Azerrad's classic "Our Band Could Be Your Life."" - "Rolling Stone"
"Ultra-vivid writing and intense honesty is what you'd expect from Kristin Hersh, one of America's finest songwriters. But "Rat Girl" is also a startlingly funny and touching memoir of her mid-Eighties moment as the bi- polar, pregnant, intermittently homeless frontwoman of a rising indie-rock band. It's a gripping journey into mental chaos and out the other side." - Simon Reynolds, author of "Rip It Up and Start Again: Postpunk 1978-84"
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About Kristin Hersh

Kristin Hersh has released more than twenty albums over the course of her career which have sold more than one million copies worldwide. She records solo, as well as with her bands Throwing Muses and 50 Foot Wave.
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Rating details

2,421 ratings
3.92 out of 5 stars
5 34% (829)
4 36% (880)
3 20% (483)
2 7% (158)
1 3% (71)

Our customer reviews

Reading this gives you the impression that Kristin is definitely a kook - but a fascinating, nice and loveable one. The book is personal and also compassionate and never feels self-pitying. Rarely do you read a book about the wild up-and-downs of someone's mental illness taking over their life and wish by the end that you were friends with that person, but that's the feeling you get by the end of Kristin's book. Despite the subject matter, it's a delightful offering. And if you happen to be a Throwing Muses fan it also gives you some insight into the first album.show more
by Melissa
What more can I say... True and funny and of course sad, otherwise funny wouldn't be any fun. Just buy it already.show more
by Adrian Dorr
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