Carry the Dog

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Bea Seger has spent her life shadowed by the trauma of the pornographic photographs her mother, Miri Marx, took of her and her brothers as children. Not all of her family made it through, and Bea manages her elusive happiness carefully. There’s Gary, her twice-ex-husband, who still shows up for her. There’s Echo, her twenty-two-year-old half-sister, who elbows her way into Bea’s world with energy and new perspective. More pressingly, there’s Bix, a film producer, and Violet, a MoMA photography curator, both of whom want to shed new light on Miri’s work–and, they say, burnish her legacy. But both ideas dredge up long-buried memories, and Bea isn’t so sure she wants to reopen that door. There’s no value in looking backward–or so Bea thinks.

Bea’s late-middle-age narration is unfiltered and often very funny, and she pulls no punches when she talks about aging and sexual desire. Gangi is sparing in the details she offers about Miri’s abuse, rendering the existing images even more horrific. Readers might wonder how Bea survived–and why she might be tempted to peek behind the curtain–but Gangi doesn’t give us much time to theorize. Bea pushes through this story as she’s pushed through her life: with grit, laser focus, and a deeply rooted belief that something good is waiting up ahead.

Reviewed By:

Author Stephanie Gangi
Star Count /5
Format Hard
Page Count 288 pages
Publisher Algonquin Books
Publish Date 02-Nov-2021
ISBN 9781643751276 Buy this Book
Issue December 2021
Category Popular Fiction