Girls of A Certain Age; Maria Adelman

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This darkly playful and subversive debut story collection explores the many impossible choices that accompany 21st century femaleness.

What is the right way to handle an abusive partner? An unexpected pregnancy? A toxic friendship? Chronic unemployment? A family member going to war? A disability? Anger? Loneliness?  Finding themselves in disempowering, frightening, or otherwise unendurable circumstances, the girls and women in Maria Adelmann's stories look for ways to free themselves into new lives or, at the very least, new states of feeling. Sometimes they do this by hurting someone else or getting hurt; sometimes by submitting, other times by mounting a rebellion. With a special talent for pressing the sharp up against the tender, Adelmann explores the many pathways through the titular condition.

Ranging in style from the magical to the terrifying to the calm tones of a self-help manual, GIRLS OF A CERTAIN AGE captures the spectrum of strategies we apply to the pain of life, strategies that we persist in pretending might actually work.

February 16, 2021


About the Author

Maria Adelmann’s work has been published by Tin House, n+1, The Threepenny Review, Indiana Review, McSweeney's Internet Tendency, Lit Hub, Electric Literature, and others. She has been awarded prizes by the Baker Artist Awards and the Maryland State Arts Council, and her work has been selected as a Distinguished Story in The Best American Short Stories. She has an MFA in fiction from The University of Virginia. She enjoys learning complicated new crafts and letting personal projects take over her life. A longtime resident of Baltimore, Adelmann recently ended up in Copenhagen after getting stuck there during the pandemic.

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