Me, My Hair, and I (Paperback)
Twenty-seven Women Untangle an Obsession
Algonquin Books, 9781616204112, 336pp.
Publication Date: September 29, 2015
October 2015 Indie Next List
— Rona Brinlee (M), The BookMark, Neptune Beach, FL
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They take place in African American kitchens, at Hindu Bengali weddings, and inside Hasidic Jewish homes. The conversation is intimate and global at once. Layered into these reminiscences are tributes to influences throughout history: Jackie Kennedy, Lena Horne, Farrah Fawcett, the Grateful Dead, and Botticelli’s Venus.
The long and the short of it is that our hair is our glory—and our nemesis, our history, our self-esteem, our joy, our mortality. Every woman knows that many things in life matter more than hair, but few bring as much pleasure as a really great hairdo.
"A terrific read for those of us who obsess about our hair. Or those who live with those of us who do. A collection that’s, I dare say, a cut above the rest.” —Mary Morris, author of The Jazz Palace
About the Author
Elizabeth Benedict is a graduate of Barnard College and the author of five novels, including the bestseller Almost and the National Book Award finalist Slow Dancing. She is the editor of the anthologies What My Mother Gave Me, a New York Times bestseller, and Mentors, Muses & Monsters, and has written for the New York Times, the Boston Globe, the Los Angeles Times, Esquire, and the Huffington Post, the Rumpus, and Tin House. Two of her essays have been selected for Best American Essays collections. She has taught widely and works as a writing coach and editor.
Praise For Me, My Hair, and I: Twenty-seven Women Untangle an Obsession…
“This anthology of essays by women explores a surprising range of issues, including identity, relationships, vanity, femininity, aging, and society.” —NYTimes.com
“Here, in a series of astonishingly good essays, writers wax eloquent about the emotions wrought by our locks: ‘good hair’ and ‘bad hair’ in African-American culture; envy of our follicly gifted siblings; the quest for delusional hairstyles; and much more.”—People
“[T]hese twenty-seven essays are beautifully revelatory and deeply personal accounts of each woman's hair”—Bustle
“Benedict has a knack for zeroing in on subjects with far-reaching, often surprising implications and resonance. In her third invitational collection, she has definitely tapped a nerve . . . Women spend enormous amounts of money and time on their hair, agonizing over every decision. Variations on these themes are tackled with candor, wit, insight, and emotion by Benedict’s 27 eloquently entertaining contributors . . . [An] irresistible, pithy, and right-on anthology.” —Booklist
“[A] splendid collection . . . By turns wry, tender, pointed, and laugh-out-loud funny, the selections take us along on the contributors’ tangled, complicated, and thoroughly engaging journeys.”—Publishers Weekly
“This collection is not only unique for the subject matter it addresses. It also provides cultural commentary that is by turns insightful, humorous, and moving. . . Surprisingly engaging reading.” —Kirkus Reviews
“We wear our hair every day, and this collection demonstrates—with great clarity and insight—the complexities of what that means for women of all backgrounds. An important conversation and worthy of note” —Library Journal