The Extra Woman: How Marjorie Hillis Led a Generation of Women to Live Alone and Like It
by Joanna Scutts
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Marjorie Hillis wrote self-help books beginning in the 1930s for women living alone. This volume looks at the world in which Hillis' books were created and read and the life their author led. More a portrait of a time and place than of a specific person this book was interesting and depressing at the same time. The world that seemed to be on the horizon for white middle class women in 1930s America never materialized and was essentially beaten into submission by the post-WWII boom. Among many other topics Scutts touches on was poet Margaret Fishback, the real life inspiration for Lillian Boxfish. This is a very readable and scholarly work which includes an extensive bibliography.
This is the 1st of the 12 non-fiction books I pledged to read this year for the Nonfiction Reading Challenge.