This collection of interwoven stories offers a devastating examination of the current cultural belief that money and beauty are at the heart of happiness. Mentoring Margaret Gracie a few years ago, I was struck then, as I am now, by her critical understanding of these ‘‘plastic’’ characters whose lives she dissects with a sharp and clever knife, but also with great compassion for their struggle ... each one of them trying to find some deeper, more meaningful reality than the superficial values encasing and imprisoning them.
—Isabel Huggan, author of Belonging: Home Away from Home
Margaret Gracie’s Plastic revolves around the life of Debbie, a former Miss America, and the power and damage her extraordinary beauty can wield. Via Gracie’s deft storytelling in multiple points of view, we’re transported into a world where appearances hold massive importance—at a cost that goes far beyond skin deep.
-Julie Paul, author of The Jealousy Bone and The Pull of the Moon
With Plastic, Margaret Gracie explores how hyper-capitalist values infiltrate our minds and dominate our bodies. The Sanderson family offers us a mirror, demonstrating the unfairness of expectations placed on mothers versus those placed on fathers, and the shallowness of our money- and beauty-obsessed culture. A potent, ambitious debut.
-Deborah Willis, author of The Dark and Other Love Stories, long-listed for a Giller Prize