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Louisa ThomasThe conceit of any memoir…is that a person can turn the ambiguous distance between "that young woman" and "I" into a credible story. This Is Not the Ivy League…is broadly framed as Blew's coming of age as a young professor in a claustrophobic place. But that's not what it really is. Blew's memoir is a kind of anti-memoir—an incredulous account, a catalog of confusion. She doesn't just look back at her anger and self-pity and despair. She looks back with anger and self-pity and despair.
—The New York Times