An oddball newspaper editor advises eccentric readers – and reckons with her own painful past
Willis Digby is the letters editor at Sis(Sisterhood) magazine, a job that drives her mad. Plowing through correspondence that fluctuates from the predictable boosterish boilerplate to letters challenging conventional notions of sanity, Willis struggles to find a balance in her selections for publication in the landmark feminist journal. Memorable letters include those from a woman who sprinkles cat food into her husband’s breakfast cereal each morning, one from a woman convinced that the man on the label of her cleaning products is harassing her, and endless gender-specific descriptions of peculiar sexual proclivities.
As Digby strikes up an unconventional friendship with one of her correspondents, she also confronts a harrowing childhood incident that has come back to haunt her. At once witty and powerful, Dear Digby is a tragicomedy that explores the shifting borders of the self, or selves, that define individual sanity and conventional thought, and redefine communication among lost souls.