YO-YO by Diane Balson


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Post Liberation--not that Liza had any use for it since she played by the old rules--Yo-Yo's a different ball game for the mid-'70's even if it's trying to reconcile the same givens. In fact, staring at a cell on the ceiling while drinking gin and eating peanut butter crackers in the morning, Liza is well on her way to mad housewifery in between the assorted schedules of her three children, their dog and her moribund avocado plant. While her husband Andrew returns each evening--he's a lawyer--to a disheveled apartment; he never communicates except in bed where he's terrific. More and more unstrung, Liza thinks of suicide--instead veers into taking a job on a Ms.-type magazine over Andrew's sad entreaties. He knows he'll lose her. The job is as hokey as the letters she writes for a column to nonexistent people, but then she meets Joe, father of five, Joe who talks, Joe who offers affection, Joe with whom she falls in love intensifying her confusion about everything in this open-ended world of options and derelictions. Diane Balson's first novel is uncomfortably alive with all those messy questions for which there are only dusty answers. Take it one unsure step further and you'll find that Liza is truly warm and loving as against all those other disenfranchised young women who have been too smart for their own good or your real pleasure. A funny, sad, attuned, frayed, ingratiating book about the way we live now, up and down, down and up.

Pub Date: March 25th, 1976
Publisher: Morrow