Chapter 4 Summary

Dolores’s mother comes home from the hospital in January, but to Dolores, this person seems to be both her mother and not her mother. She has lost a lot of weight. Her eyebrows are plucked. She smokes. She has developed a twitch.

Ma has decided that she needs to go back to work. Grandma lines up a janitorial job at the rectory, but her mother refuses to take it. The generation gaps between grandmother, mother, and granddaughter create tension all around. Grandma disapproves of her mother’s choices in life, claiming that in her day, “women knew their place.” Grandma and Dolores spar over her granddaughter's love of The Beatles.

Ma tries to bond with Dolores. She invites her to go on walks, which...

(The entire section is 525 words.)