From the author of the eye-opening and controversial essay on poverty that was read by millions comes the real-life Nickel and Dimed, as Linda Tirado explains what it's like to be working poor in America, and why poor people make the decisions they do.
We in America have certain ideas of what it means to be poor. Linda Tirado, in her signature brutally honest yet personable voice, takes all of these preconceived notions and smashes them to bits. She articulates not only what it is to be working poor in America (yes, you can be poor and live in a house and have a job, even two), but what poverty is truly like - on all levels. In her thought-provoking voice, Tirado discusses how she went from lower-middle class, to sometimes middle class, to poor and everything in between, and in doing so reveals why "poor people don't always behave the way middle-class America thinks they should."
©2014 Linda Tirado (P)2014 Penguin Audio
Look, I'm sympathetic to the author's cause, but if she is going to read it as if she's yelling at me the entire time, and with that much attitude and swearing just to be edgy... poor choice.
Faced with mindless duty, when an audio book player slips into a rear pocket and mini buds pop into ears, old is made new again.
“Hand to Mouth” is Linda Tirado’s perception and experience of being poor in America. Conservative media rants, and liberal paeans to Linda Tirado’s memoir infer guilt more than understanding. Some conservative’ pundits believe any American who works hard can get ahead. Many liberal’ pundits believe most Americans born poor will remain poor. Liberal’ pundits praise Tirado’s story because it reinforces their belief in “born poor, remain poor” while conservative’ pundits attack Tirado’s credibility because her story denies equal opportunity. If Tirado’s facts are only partly untrue, it assuages conservative guilt about belief in equal opportunity. Even if Tirado’s facts are only partly true, promotion of her story assuages liberal’s guilt for being personally successful.
What is missing from a fair understanding of Tirado’s memoir is its fundamental truth; i.e. being a minimum wage employee in America is grindingly difficult.
Tirado breaks the cycle with some skill as a writer but a lot of luck. Her story is picked up by the media. Her story is told every day by other minimum wage workers seen on main street; e.g. the people serving hamburgers, cleaning houses, waiting tables. Tirado’s story just became the chosen one. Tirado will have a whole new set of problems to face in her life but they will come from her own personality; not the exigencies of American society that chooses to ignore the plight of minimum wage workers.
Hand To Mouth is at the top.
No other book has ever come this close to the real, visceral truth about what it's like to be poor in the United States.
Required reading for the middle-class and above.
This book hit home, big-time. Linda writes, speaks, and feels right from her heart, and I know this because I LIVE this, every single second of every single day. There were moments in this book that caused tears to well up in my eyes because you almost never read or hear your exact experiences, frustrations, and reality written or spoken as they were in this book. Linda Tirado, thank you, and bravo!
I really enjoyed listening and hearing the author's perspective. While I knew much of this, there were many little things that individuals in poverty have to deal with that I hadn't considered. Was great to broaden my perspective and helps to make me more effective in my work. Highly recommend this read.
While i have some reservations about the language, the reality of experience is spot on. Unless you have lived paycheck to paycheck you simply do not understand what most people go through every day. This book helps those that don't get it, get it, maybe.
I found myself nodding several times because I've been there. I've had to decide what bill do i pay and risk the other going to collections. That is one example that some people refuse to understand. Another example, just because i didn't clean today doesn't mean I'm dirty... It means I'm tired from working, so chill out.
I liked everything about this book. Well done all around. The voicing was superb. It stayed engaging.
My only nit-pick is the reading was done with a sound activated microphone apparently. Whenever a sentence was started that didn't have a previous sentence to keep the microphone on, the microphone wouldn't pick up the first part of the word. For example, "Things" would sound like "hings" as the 'th' sound was halved. It was annoying.
Linda does an excellent job at explainingthe how's and whys of things that can and do happen to the working poor. There were a lot of parallels to my own experiences in my twenties and thirties. So many times I remember thinking many of the things she brings out. kudos .. an added benefit after listening to Linda when I read her tweets on Twitter I hear her voice now
One of the best and most important books on the subject of poverty written by someone who knows. It is unapologetic, purely empirical, and a must read. So many so many people need to hear this and take it in. A very important voice I hope that she decides to continue writing on the subject. She is ruthlessly honest and very well spoken.
Wonderful story telling and although she is from different states, her story reflects the stories of the incredible people I work with. I would count this as a should read and a great way to challenge political rhetoric around poverty.
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