Discovering Vashon writer Alice Bloch’s groundbreaking books, Lifetime Guarantee (Persephone Press) and The Law of Return (Alyson), was a life altering experience for many lesbians in the 1980s, as stories by and about “people like us” were largely absent from bookstores and libraries at the time. These books and their small feminist and gay publishers were part of a literary and political movement that continues today. This afternoon she will celebrate the publication of a much anticipated followup memoir, Mother Daughter Banquet (Minerva Rising). Alice Block was nine years old when her mother died, and with her grandmother, stepmother and aunt, she both becomes surrogate mother to her four younger siblings and learns something about what it is to be a mother (as well as a lesbian, a writer and a Jewish midwesterner).
“In this elegant and compelling memoir, Alice Bloch unravels a web of women’s secrets. ..Block’s work speaks to anyone who has experienced an eerie outsider feeling from family. As a Jewish American lesbian writer, she captures the lure of longing within belonging, crafting a richly textured story full of unforgettable detail.”--Carol Guess.