Books: When Women Ruled the Roost

INTIMATIONS OF EVE (331 pp.) — Vardis Fisher — Vanguard ($2.75).

Grandmother was boss, and when she wanted anything she yelled for it. If it didn't come fast enough, she cracked someone on the head with a stone. When Raven was hungry, he snagged a fish from the brook and gulped it, head, guts and all. When Barren wanted a baby, she moaned to the moon, danced in the rain, hugged leafy trees.

Nobody worried much. If people sickened, Grandmother doctored them, and they either died or got well. Nobody bathed and nobody cared. People...

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