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30

WEDNESDAY

In The Porno Girl and Other Stories, Merin Wexler divides tales of mothers, daughters, and wives into neat sections, though her characters themselves defy comfortable societal boundaries. The thoughts tormenting these women are simultaneously fun to eavesdrop on and exasperating to endure, whether it’s the woman having another baby in order to keep a nanny she professes to hate, or the new mom of the title story: “[E]verything, everything, had changed since the baby in ways beyond measure, and one of those ways was that for the first time in my life I was drawn to peep shows….What I craved were the video halls where twenty-five cents bought one minute’s huffing and thrusting, lifting me from my life in a way nothing else could, at least not any way described in the postpartum handbooks.” Ask Wexler about her source of inspiration when she reads at 7 p.m. at Politics and Prose, 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW. Free. (202) 364-1919. (Tricia Olszewski)