All posts tagged: reinvention

Caroline Leavitt will send you a watercolor painting if you buy her new book, WITH OR WITHOUT YOU, how this ties in with the narrative, reinvention, going home, and so much more

By Leslie Lindsay  A thoughtful, incisive meditation on what it means to transform, following a coma, with intimate and complex relationships hinging in the balance.  ~WEDNESDAYS WITH WRITERS|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ New York Times Bestselling author One of She Reads’ “Most Anticipated Reads of 2020” Public Library Association Buzzed Book Starred Kirkus Review A Fall Title of Note, Publisher’s Weekly Good Morning America, A Zibby Owens August Book Club Pick One of Popsugar’s Incredible Books of August Bustle Best Books Out This Week One of LitHub’s Best Books to put on your TBR pile right now Caroline Leavitt’s books always inspire and intrigue. WITH OR WITHOUT YOU (Algonquin, August 4th 2020) is no exception, but this one seems much more interior than her more recent novels, and perhaps that’s because it almost has to be–one of the main characters is in a coma. Told with precision and insight and emotion, this is a literary examination of what happens when life is altered by a single tragic moment, a clear delineation between ‘before’ and ‘after.’ Stella and Simon are in …

Can you sense what animals are feeling? Maybe. R.L. Maizes discusses this, plus abandonment, father-daughter relationships, how pets inspire, reading jags, and so much more in OTHER PEOPLE’S PETS

By Leslie Lindsay  Highly inventive, charming tale about a young woman, her criminal father, a love for animals and how animals are sometimes part of our destiny. ~WEDNESDAYS WITH WRITERS| ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ Charmingly off-beat and slightly quirky, OTHER PEOPLE’S PETS by R.L. Maizes, a Pushcart Prize-nominated author, (Celadon, July 14 2020) is told with such wonder, such sparse–yet focused–details, I couldn’t help by empathize with the situations Maizes constructs in her story. La La (Louise) Fine is a fourth year vet student and she relates to four-legged creatures more than the human ones–the only exception being perhaps her father, Zev. Having been abandoned by her mother as a young child, La La grew up with a single dad who was a locksmith turned thief. She went along with him on his “jobs,” and tended to the animals, stood as the watch-out, and often left treats for the animals. But that’s all in her past. Now, she has a promising career as a vet, an adoring fiancé, and she’s mostly come to terms with her mother. …

Susan Gloss talks about her love for art, how it intersects with life, grief, and loss, plus she introduces me to a new word, oh–and this gorgeous book, THE CURIOSITIES

By Leslie Lindsay  A tender exploration of love and loss, addiction and recovery, pain and healing, THE CURIOSITIES is about the fragile condition of the human soul and art.  Madison, Wisconsin is a mecca of artistic pursuits–with a ton of authors in residence, but in all honesty, I am not sure I’ve read a book *set* in Madison—but THE CURIOSITIES (Berkley, Feb 2019)–takes place right in the heart of the city. I loved this! Plus, I absolutely adore reading about art–it’s like two art forms in one, a double treat. Nell Parker has a PhD in art history. She lives in a cozy Craftsman bungalow with her attorney/professor husband, but she is devastated by a recent miscarriage. She’s grieving and having difficulty moving forward. Plus, she’s swimming in a mound of (secret) debt. As luck would have it, Nell finds herself accepting a position as the director of a nonprofit artist’s colony, established by the late Betsy Barrett, a patron of the modern arts. Nell isn’t sure she’s exactly cut out for the job, but she’s willing to give it …

What happens when a house-swap goes wrong, plus Thailand, reinvention, thrills, and so much more in LAST SEEN ALIVE

By Leslie Lindsay  Chilling tale of psychological suspense hinging on one woman’s past, her attempt at reinvention, and so much more. Plus, Thailand, finding the time to read, books to obsess over and more.  Libby Hall wants a vacation. She’s newly married, a teacher, and has just suffered a miscarriage. She and her husband, Jamie are living in a basement flat in Bath when a leaflet flits through her door offering a house swap in Cornwall. The note indicates the couple selected their home/flat because of its close proximity to the hospital; they have an ailing daughter who needs a specialist at that particular hospital. In exchange, Libby and Jamie can live in their glorious home in Cornwall. For a week. If it sounds too good to be true…it probably is. But Libby is desperate. And so they make arrangements. The isolated seaside mansion is everything they hoped for–and more. Panoramic views! A fully stocked fridge! Plenty of sightseeing nearby! But strange things start happening. A sheep’s skull in a tree? A strange man who seems to be lurking everywhere …

WeekEND Reading: NYT Bestselling author or THE COUPLE NEXT DOOR talks about being an emotional writer, why we like being frightened (in a safe environment), new beginnings, and more in her stunning new psych thriller, A STRANGER IN THE HOUSE

By Leslie Lindsay  Last summer, Shari Lapena burst on the psychological thriller scene with her runaway bestseller, THE COUPLE NEXT DOOR. They were young, attractive, a sweet baby…and yet. She’s back with another stunning story—one that will have you flipping the pages so fast, they might ignite. A STRANGER IN THE HOUSE (Viking, August 15) is perfect for those who love fast-paced domestic psychological thrillers ready for the beach, or backyard, or airplane, or wherever you happen to be reading from. And trust me, you will read this in a weekend. Easy. A woman with a secret—multiple, faceted secrets—and a husband who doesn’t know what to believe when his wife is found on the wrong side of town in a car crash she doesn’t remember, or is trying hard to forget. A STRANGER IN THE HOUSE is one of those stories, that once you think you  have it figured out, it changes a bit. Signature twists and turns only Shari Lapena can do; I raced through A STRANGER IN THE HOUSE and didn’t want it …

Wednesdays with Writers: Lisa Ko talks about her stunning debut, THE LEAVERS, what it means to be restless & stubborn & independent, how music provides a sense of identity, cultures, reinvention and so much more

By Leslie Lindsay  THE LEAVERS is at first a story of immigration/deportation, social justice, adoption, but it is so much more: it’s about heart, family, culture, and dare I say: required reading.  It’s hard to believe Lisa Ko’s THE LEAVERS (May 2, Algonquin Books) is a debut. It’s eloquently crafted, well-researched, and absolutely beautifully executed. In fact, Lisa is the latest winner of the PEN/Bellwether Prize for Fiction, awarded by Barbara Kingsolver to a novel that addresses contemporary issues of social justice. Timely, topical…and oh, so emotionally rich, it’s really hard to categorize THE LEAVERS–but ultimately, it’s darn good fiction with well-developed, fully dimensional characters; I loved every one of them and for different reasons. Deming Guo’s mother, Polly (Peilan), an undocumented Chinese immigrant, fails to come home from work (a nail salon) one day, and he’s left on his own. He’s eleven. (On a personal note, I have 10 and 12 year old daughters–I couldn’t imagine!). He’s in limbo for awhile while family friends decide what’s best for him. Deming is eventually adopted by ‘older’ …