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Publisher's Summary

Families today are squeezed on every side - from high childcare costs and harsh employment policies to workplaces without paid family leave or even dependable and regular working hours. Many realize that attaining the standard of living their parents managed has become impossible.

Alissa Quart, executive editor of the Economic Hardship Reporting Project, examines the lives of many middle-class Americans who can now barely afford to raise children. Through gripping firsthand storytelling, Quart shows how our country has failed its families. Her subjects - from professors to lawyers to caregivers to nurses - have been wrung out by a system that doesn’t support them and enriches only a tiny elite.

Interlacing her own experience with close-up reporting on families that are just getting by, Quart reveals parenthood itself to be financially overwhelming, except for the wealthiest. She offers real solutions to these problems, including outlining necessary policy shifts, as well as detailing the DIY tactics some families are already putting into motion and argues for the cultural reevaluation of parenthood and caregiving. 

Written in the spirit of Barbara Ehrenreich and Jennifer Senior, Squeezed is an eye-opening audiobook. Powerfully argued, deeply reported, and ultimately hopeful, it casts a bright, clarifying light on families struggling to thrive in an economy that holds too few options. It will make listeners think differently about their lives and those of their neighbors.

©2018 Alissa Quart (P)2018 HarperCollins Publishers

Critic Reviews

“Brilliant - a keen, elegantly written, and scorching account of the American family today. Through vivid stories, sharp analysis and wit, Quart anatomizes the middle class’s fall while also offering solutions and hope.” (Barbara Ehrenreich, author of Nickel and Dimed

What members say

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Great content, poor reader

I’m enjoying the thoughts and concepts of this book, and enjoy the author. Unfortunately, the reader sounds like Siri. Her voice inflections and intonations break sentences into fragments, and instead of getting lost in the story, my mind is distracted with the task of figuring out how the fragments fit together. The reader does not seem to understand the rhythm or flow of our language. It’s too bad as the reader’s poor performance will likely make me not listen to this book in entirety.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

So hard to listen to because of narrator- uhg

Was so looking forward to listening to this book as I think the author and subject matter are spot on- but the narrator is so grating I don’t think I can muster through it. Might have to get paperback. So sad!!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Squeezed into action

Excellent book. However, the reader ‘s voice did not suit the book’s topic. She sounded happy when talking about hard things. Why didn’t the author read the book? She has a great voice!

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An Essential and Necessary Read

Quart’s skill as a journalist is used to compile a logical and compelling argument about American society and the cost of existing today. I appreciated her careful analysis and interviews on the macro environment and how America’s reach for progress has left and will leave so many of us scrambling for new solutions for coping.