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  • Published: 19 October 2021
  • ISBN: 9781984855473
  • Imprint: Random House US Group
  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 480
  • RRP: $50.00

Ladyparts

A Memoir



A frank, witty, and dazzlingly written memoir of one woman trying to keep it together while her body falls apart—from the New York Times bestselling author of Shutterbabe

I’m crawling around on the bathroom floor, picking up pieces of myself. These pieces are not a metaphor. They are actual pieces.

Twenty years after her iconic memoir Shutterbabe, Deborah Copaken is at her darkly comedic nadir: battered, broke, divorcing, dissected, and dying—literally—on sexism’s battlefield as she scoops up what she believes to be her internal organs into a glass container before heading off to the hospital . . . in an UberPool.

Ladyparts is her irreverent inventory of both the female body and the body politic of womanhood in America, the story of one woman brought to her knees by the one-two-twelve punch of divorce, solo motherhood, healthcare Frogger, unaffordable childcare, shady landlords, her father’s death, college tuitions, sexual harassment, corporate indifference, ageism, sexism, and plain old bad luck. Plus seven serious illnesses, one atop the other, which provide the book’s narrative skeleton: vagina, uterus, breast, heart, cervix, brain, and lungs. She bounces back from each bum body part, finds workarounds for every setback—she transforms her home into a commune to pay rent; sells her soul for health insurance; turns FBI informant when her sexual harasser is nominated to the White House—but in her slippery struggle to survive a steep plunge off the middle-class ladder, she is suddenly awoken to what it means to have no safety net.

Side-splittingly funny one minute, a freak horror show the next, quintessentially American, Ladyparts is an era-defining memoir for our time.

  • Published: 19 October 2021
  • ISBN: 9781984855473
  • Imprint: Random House US Group
  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 480
  • RRP: $50.00

Praise for Ladyparts

“A fierce, caustic, joyful, and deeply courageous account of what it means to go through life in a female body, this book (like women ourselves) is so much greater than the sum of its parts, yet each part, and each page, is truly phenomenal.”—Peggy Orenstein, author of Girls & Sex “Utterly vital. Ladyparts enraged and amused me in equal measure. Deborah Copaken shows what it means to barely survive beyond the hallowed slice of privilege, where moving through the world in a woman’s body can be dangerous, absurd, frustrating, beautiful, and sometimes all at once. A wickedly smart, thoroughly investigated, and elegantly written takedown of the gender discrimination and institutional misogyny we have accepted for too long. This book howls for women in a world that too often only allows us a whisper.”—Rachel Louise Snyder, author of No Visible Bruises and What We’ve Lost Is Nothing “This book is a must-read for anyone who knows a woman, loves a woman, or is a woman. Deborah’s sharp wit, heartfelt humor, and unabashed honesty turn what could be a tragic tale into a heroic journey of perseverance. Anyone who reads it will walk away feeling inspired.”—Katherine Schwarzenegger, New York Times bestselling author of The Gift of Forgiveness: Inspiring Stories from Those Who Have Overcome the Unforgivable “Is it fair to comment on a book in which you are a character? Fair or not, I will, because I want every single woman, and every human who has loved (or even met) a woman, to read this essential book. It is a page-turner that makes you scream in empathetic frustration and laugh so hard you have to put the book down. I’m honestly not sure whether I cried more because I was laughing or because I was so very sad.”—Ayelet Waldman, author of A Really Good Day: How Microdosing Made a Mega Difference in My Mood, My Marriage, and My Life “Every chapter of Deborah Copaken’s memoir contains information about women’s bodies that I couldn’t believe no one had told me before. I was constantly outraged at what she had to endure to learn it all, but the book is so funny, smart, and entertaining that I’m grateful to have her as a guide. Ladyparts is essential reading for all women, and for the people who love them.”—Maile Meloy, author of Do Not Become Alarmed Ladyparts is a memoir unlike any I’ve ever read—it’s quite literally visceral, from the unforgettable first moment where Copaken crawls on the tile floor collecting what she takes to be her own bloody organs. With breathtaking candor, Copaken catalogs the calamities of her body, part by part, spinning out a raw, raucous, often hilarious account of herself—with so much insight and generosity that I finished the book feeling remade.”—Semi Chellas, award-winning writer/producer, Mad Men and The Romanoffs

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