Girl Factory ePUB º Kindle Edition


  • Kindle Edition
  • 272 pages
  • Girl Factory
  • Karen Dietrich
  • English
  • 21 March 2016

10 thoughts on “Girl Factory

  1. Sherrie Sherrie says:

    I received an ARC of The Girl Factory through the Goodreads Giveaways program The Girl Factory details the life of Karen Dietrich as she maneuvers her way through various friendships and a complicated mother daughter bond Although Karen is a precocious child and highly intelligent she struggles after elementary school with building and maintaining relationships Karen also seems to look for validation from others and seeks out friends who are at times a bad influence When a long buried family secret is revealed in chapter 25 all the pieces come together and the reader can see the cause of much of the author's behavior The Girl Factory was a dark and powerfully written memoir which reveals several painful and intimate events in her life I enjoyed reading the book and applaud the courage it took to share her story Well done


  2. Jennifer Frank Jennifer Frank says:

    I enjoyed reading The Girl Factory through Kindle I finished it in 4 evenings putting my homework aside because I kept wanting to return to the book I like the cultural references which those of us born in the mid to late 70s will all relate to I also like the smooth and calm tone of the words and sentences The growing pains and nuances of the girl childhood experience brought to life in the book though each of us have a uniue load of discomforts and joys create a mirror for readers to see their own childhood selves We take the walk with the narrator and rediscover ourselves at the same time


  3. Becky Becky says:

    Could you write the story of your life Your REAL life Not moralized Not white washed Frank Unflinching Could you do it Could you write the story without cutting out the dark things that you felt and thought and did Could you do it and not hold backThis is what Karen Dietrich does in her memoir The Girl Factory Set in Connellsville PA from 1985 through the late 90s this book is an exuisite description of how girls often become who they become as women Karen is the youngest of three sisters and has a prickly relationship with her mother and father Her parents work at Anchor a plant that made glass bottles and was true to its nameserving as a financial anchor in this small town Karen worries about everything and has developed obsessive compulsive tendencies to attempt to control her world When a man goes to the Anchor plant and kills four supervisors before taking his own life Karen’s world is forever changed Though her parents weren’t there when it happened and the incident really isn’t much than a blip in the storyline reflecting on this incident triggers something in Karen She begins to put together the pieces of her life in her mind and to reflect on why she is the way she isThough Karen’s words were beautifully crafted it was not always an easy read for me Before picking this book up I had already learned that Karen was only two years behind me in school I didn’t know her but I knew her older sister Linda in the bookbut her real name has been changed “Linda” and I were in chorus chamber ensemble and several musicals together It was difficult to read this knowing that I knew the real person It felt like I was prying into her personal life spying on her most vulnerable moments Then there’s the sudden realizations I had as I was reading I knew “Julie Walls” who picked on Karen in elementary school Again the name is changed but the information about her is a dead giveaway I went to the same junior high and immediately recognized every single teacher mentioned More than that I experienced much of what Karen experienced from her classmates Picked on for not looking a certain way or acting a certain way Feeling ostracized because your academic skills made you somewhat of a freak Being in love with words because there was no hope for you to be in love with a boyUltimately this book allows Karen to achieve something her mother apparently was never able to achieve By exposing the wounds of her childhood Karen is able to face the reality of her injuries allow them to air out to heal She doesn’t simply slap on a band aid instead of examining the root of the problem something Karen’s mother literally does when Linda’s thumb picking leaves her skin raw and bleeding I can’t imagine what it would be like to write a book this honest and some of the reactions of people who were much closer to this situation than I are floating back to me But this is a book that has to be written not only to heal the wounds in ONE girl’s life but to show other little girls that the wounds they carry aren’t uniue


  4. Allison Allison says:

    Gave this novel about 40 pages but I just couldn't concentrate because I could never figure out what STORY she was telling Dietrich's admittedly lovely descriptions jump all over the place and while that may be the character's personality andor way of narrating it frustrated me to never know where the narrative was headed There are plenty books out there I'd like to read so this one has been put aside


  5. Dana Dana says:

    I have a book review for you just a warning this is NOT a good review This is My very first time giving a one star review I believed that if you can write and publish a book then you deserve at least 3 stars Well not this book I grew up in the area that the Author writes about I went to the same Jr and Sr High I honestly thought this book was going to be about the aftermath of one of the Most horrific shootings to happen where I grew up Its Not at all Oh she does pepper the story with what took place that day in 1985 but you really learn nothing about the aftermath What we learn is that Karen is from a what would be considered in Connellsville a well to do family Both Parents working at the factory Nice House built in pool That was RARE Ms Dietrich Contradicts herself many many times she says her mother doesn't like to be around children but then writes about her and her sister sleeping with their mother when their father works nights She portrays her Mother as a Cold unfeeling Mother But then her Mother tells her shes perfect and to me her Mother seems so sad why is she sad we never find out for sure Karen writes she snoops and is very nosy goes thru everyone's things and yet NEVER discovers some papers that could change her life until she is in her late teens and yet she NEVER brings up these papers to her family And when she claims to go back to get them later they were gone Wouldn't you at that age keep papers that pertained to YOU and confront your parents about them She writes about being picked on in school and yet she continues to tell us through the book how smart she isover and over and over we get it Karen you are smart did she do that in school she acts like she never had ANYONE and she writes about her and her friend did this her and another friend did that she made the JV cheer suad then uit she had a boyfriend thru Junior and Sr year and then we find out she even had a Subaruto drive while still in High School And yet she whines and whines and whines you didn't have a real Christmas tree but yet you had a tree a beautiful tree but YOU didn't like it sooo that was your Mother's fault so now that you are ALL GROWN UP get your own damn tree I'm sorry this Lady really pissed me off the way she put down my town and what got me most was how she described the people from Dunbar coming into the store where she worked Gee Karen aren't you judging just like you claimed you were Totally disliked this book and would NOT recommend it to ANYONE unless you like whiny people who blame everyone for their own misery The only reason I am giving this a star at all is because I Know I couldn't write a book but If I could it sure wouldn't be Whiny like this one


  6. Karyl Karyl says:

    As a little girl in Connellsville Pennsylvania Karen grew up in a middle class home the younger daughter of two people who worked in the Anchor glass making plant nearby And in 1985 the year she was 8 a man shot and killed four Anchor supervisors before turning the gun on himself That event marked and scarred everyone in the town including Karen and her familyOr at least that's the way the book is marketed In reality there's not a whole lot about the shooting and even less about the aftermath I don't really mind however as Ms Dietrich's own memoirs are uite interesting on their own But the false marketing as it were is somewhat irritatingThat said this book is in a way uite sad Dietrich is very in tune with her younger self and is very capable of letting her younger self's voice shine through which can be difficult for an adult far removed in years to do She is very sexually precocious in some ways which can be disturbing to read about but it is understandable given the medical report she finds as a teen Her relationship with her mother is just sad; her mother is so cold and so unreachable much preferring to clean and to doll herself up than to give her girls the attention they need The way in which she always wanted to make their family into an us vs them Karen and her mother against her sister and her father was very sad Mothers just aren't supposed to act that wayThe thing that really let me down about this book is I felt that Dietrich kept making the same mistakes over and over again and it seemed as though she knew she was making a bad decision like continuing to date John Banks and did it anyhow I enjoyed the way in which Dietrich's love for words shines through her prose and her writing is uite lyrical and fascinating And because she's just two years older than I am I loved all the references to music that reminded me of my childhood and teenage years I just wanted from her memoirs something that felt a little redeeming


  7. Jpavalock Jpavalock says:

    Karen did grow up in privilege by most standards Connellsville was working class factory coal mines and retail People tried to provide everything that was necessary and some of the luxuries for their family It was 1952 when we got our first television and we still had a party phone line but we did have a phone I had left by the '80's and came to Texas My Aunt was still living and I visited in 1984 Things had really changed Most of downtown was empty of stores or any kind of income producing business Karen's parents made a good living and provided well for her and her sisters And yet they were very troubled and unhappy because of dark secrets that no one could or would talk about I get the impression that Karen and Linda were left to themselves on many occasions just at the time when they needed supervision most Karen does come off whiney and un appreciative She does need to tell her readers how very smart she is and how freely she explored her sexuality There is no faith or church life that I can find in this book Since I read this America has had two incidents of violence another shooting here in Texas at Ft Hood and just this week a stabbing in Murraysville just outside of Pittsburgh These acts have really traumatized our children beyond what I as a child experienced by even the duck cover drills in the '50's


  8. Erin Forson Erin Forson says:

    Dietrich details her experience growing up in Pennsylvania in a factory town with parents who are lifelong Anchor Glass Factory employees I'm not a prude but I was a little disturbed by the early obsession the author has with sexuality and her body in the memior Of course the clues are there for anyone with some common sense to see that this obsession was one born of unusual events and is not normal in one so young Sadly the explantation for Dietrich's behavior comes to light very late in the memoir and little is done to evaluate the author's development after the discovery In fact I would argue that very little change happens in light of this revelation and that was somewhat of a disappointment A child of lifelong factory workers myself I did feel the representation of the humdrum life was uite acccurate although this family seemed to be a bit well to do than my own Perhaps identifying with Dietrich is one reason I really didn't enjoy the memoir very much Overall it was just too melancholy I much prefer a memoir like Jeannette Walls The Glass Castle where despite hardships or perhaps because of them the character changes and develops for the better


  9. Chrissy Chrissy says:

    I'm going to start out this review with a disclaimer the author of this book was my college room mate during my senior year her junior year Having said that and growing up in Pittsburgh I think I had a different perspective on the book than the average reader I'd be reading and there'd be a mention of a favorite stuffed animal and I'd remember it in our dorm room Or there'd be a mention of a favorite radio station which was the same station I had listened to as a child So those references while jarring at first made me smile And feel nostalgic And it was a very odd feeling while reading because I had seen pictures of the author when she was young and I remember her mothernormally when I read I conjure up my own ideas of what people and places look like but I didn't need to here because I already KNEWThat's not to say that other folks who DON'T know the author won't enjoy this book Karen's writing is very lyrical and haunting and the story sticks with you even after it's over Anyone who grew up feeling lonely feeling like an outcast can relate to this book Highly recommend


  10. Jenn Jenn says:

    This coming of age story doesn't make loud pronouncements; it reveals itself uietly intimately and with an honesty that is as sharp and clear as the glass that ever present in Dietrich's childhood Dietrich finds the voice of her younger self listens and then lets her speak The adult Karen the writer does not patronize her young narrator Instead she crafts a narrative that is plainspoken built upon the events we see in girls' lives as well as those hidden from public view She dots the journey with signposts from the 80s and 90s that will have readers of a certain age or at least this reader nodding with nostalgia This story of an outsider reaches out to all of us who wore that label and others but refused to be defined by it Instead of feeling sad and some of what happens in this book is uite upsetting the reader never loses this sense of kinship and knows the younger Karen will find a way to herself


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About the Author: Karen Dietrich

​Karen Dietrich is the author of GIRL AT THE EDGE a psychological thriller from Grand Central Publishing She is also the author of THE GIRL FACTORY A MEMOIR and several poetry chapbooks Karen plays drums in the indie rock band Essential Machine She lives east of Pittsburgh PA with her husband son and three cats.