Writing in an Age of Silence

by Sara Paretsky

Paperback, 2009


Checked out


Verso (2009), Edition: 2 Reprint, 138 pages


Paretsky explores the traditions of political and literary dissent that have informed her life and work, against the unparalleled repression of free speech and thought in the USA today. In tracing the writer's difficult journey from silence to speech, she turns to her childhood and youth in rural Kansas, then evokes Chicago--the city with which she has become indelibly associated--from her arrival during the civil-rights struggle in the mid-1960s to her literary creation, the south-side detective V. I. Warshawski. Paretsky traces the emergence of Warshawski from the shadows of the loner detectives that stalk the mean streets of Dashiell Hammett's and Raymond Chandler's novels, and in the process explores American individualism, the failure of the American dream, and the resulting dystopia. Both memoir and meditation, this is a compelling exploration of the writer's art and daunting responsibility in the face of the assault on US civil liberties post-9/11.--From publisher description.… (more)

User reviews

LibraryThing member kdedson
I read this memoir in one sitting. I have always been a fan of Paretsky and appreciated her insightful comments on the USA Patriot Act and other intellectual freedom issues. Highly recommended for all librarians
LibraryThing member Martha.Hiss
I love Paretsky's writing. I would like to meet V.I and have her on my team when the going gets tough. I know more about Chicago than many other U.S. cities just from reading Paretsky's books. This memoir gives the reader some idea of how V.I came to be - what parts of Paretsky are in her. It was interesting to discover how politically aware Paretsky is and to read her insights on current American politics. I enjoyed reading the essays in this volume, but more than that, the essays made me want to see Paretsky give a talk in person. I'm sure she must be a very passionate speaker. Sometimes it would be advantageous to be a U.S. citizen.… (more)
LibraryThing member devenish
This is the life story of a remarkable woman,Sara Paretsky.It is also a description of how she constructs and writes her books and including a large dash of social comment. It is overall a most interesting book and will fascinate anyone who has read her books.
It begins with these words - 'One of my favourite books is Caught in the Web of Words, Elizabeth Murray's loving memoir of her grandfather, James A.H.Murray,who creator the Oxford English Dictionary. I'd like to steal her title for a memoir of my own life.… (more)
LibraryThing member ffortsa
a collection of Paretsky's essays, some expanded, most having to do with her involvement in and growth through the women's movement, in her own words 'the second wave'. She's a few years older than I am, and most of what she says in unfortunately still being discussed. I think that having very supportive parents were one reason I didn't get involved much in the formal components of the women's movement, also that my personality is cautious about involvement in causes. With her family of decidedly non-supportive people, it was probably her lifeline to a successful life. Interesting if a little too polemical for me at times.… (more)


Original language


Physical description

138 p.; 5.1 inches


1844673774 / 9781844673773

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