All posts tagged: sisters

Chevy Stevens is back and talking about the challenge of getting DARK ROADS ‘off the ground,’ being out in nature, the magical healing of dogs, her obsession with the mid-century modern vibe, more

By Leslie Lindsay A brilliant and unique tale about mysterious disappearances along the Cold Creek Highway, one dark road where you never see the twists coming. WRITERS INTERVIEWING WRITERS ALWAYS WITH A BOOK Chevy Stevens & Leslie Lindsay in conversation Chevy’s books, including Still Missing, a New York Times bestseller and winner of the International Thriller Writers Award for Best First Novel, have been published in more than thirty countries. Is it bad luck or the work of one or several serial killers? That’s the overarching question Chevy Stevens’ new book, DARK ROADS (St. Martin’s Press, August 3) seeks to find.  Some roads deceive you | Some roads betray you | Some roads destroy you COMING AUGUST 3, 2021 ABOUT DARK ROADS: For decades people have been warned about the mysterious disappearances along the Cold Creek Highway. Hailey McBride decides to run to escape her unbearable circumstances, thinking her outdoor survival skills will save her. And then there are other girls, too. Amber and Beth, sisters, and one has been murdered on the infamous highway. Readers are thrust into a …

Sally Hepworth on her fabulous new THE GOOD SISTER, featuring twin sisters, mental health elements, a baby, and so much more, plus the books she’s raving about.

By Leslie Lindsay  A neuro-atypical librarian decides to have a baby for her (fraternal) twin sister, but the story is so gorgeous, perceptive, and multi-faceted. The Most Anticipated Book of 2021: CNN.com • E!Online • Bustle • Goodreads • PopSugar • SheReads • Parade.com • Bookish ~WRITERS INTERVIEWING WRITERS|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ April Spotlight: Siblings I have been a fan of Sally Hepworth’s writing since the beginning, so when I discovered her new book, THE GOOD SISTER (St. Martin’s Press, April 13), I knew I had to get my hands on it–not only does it deal with adult fraternal twin sisters, but it also touches on mental health issues, family dysfunction, and mystery. Rose and Fern Castle are fraternal twins, and as different as night and day. Rose is the ‘responsible one,’ and rounder, called “Rosie Round,” by their mother, a nickname she detests (understandably). Rose marries, is an interior decorator. Fern, tall and willowy, slightly quirky, she hasn’t been formally diagnosed, but is likely on the spectrum, with sensory issues and an almost very literal interpretation of the world. What’s …

Are we a work-in-progress? Absolutely! Liese O’Halloran Schwarz talks about this, how success is elusive, her childhood in Thailand, the healing power of connection, and more in WHAT COULD BE SAVED

By Leslie Lindsay Enthralling family drama set in two distinct time periods–and places–about the bonds of siblings, a mystery, and more. ~WRITERS INTERVIEWING WRITERS|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ APRIL SPOTLIGHT: SIBLINGS A January 2021 Indie Next Pick People Book of the Week Real Simple Best Books of 2021 Starred Publishers Weekly Review…and more Is it possible to be a good person even when you’ve done something reprehensible? This is the overarching question of WHAT COULD BE SAVED (Atria Books, January 12, 2021) by Liese O’Halloran Schwarz. This is an ambitious novel both in scope and length, combining dual-timelines of 1972 and 2019, a large cast of characters, a mystery, a drama, societal class, plus it takes place alternatively in Washington, D.C., and Bangkok. It’s a lot. Laura Preston is a reclusive artist/painter in 2019 who finds herself at odds with her older sister, Bea. Their mother, Genevieve is slowing devolving into dementia. When a stranger connects with Laura via email, saying he’s their long-lost brother, she’s quick to believe it. She ignores Bea’s warnings and travels to Bangkok to learn the truth. …

A Blazing Portrait of a highly enmeshed sibling relationship, a crumbling English house, a despondent writer-illustrator mother and a slippery twist in Daisy Johnson’s SISTERS

By Leslie Lindsay  A taut, twisty, mind-bending read that is so superbly written, so lyrical and tragic.  ~Writers Interviewing Writers|Always with a Book~ Spotlight: Siblings A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK OF THE YEAR ONE OF THE TOP TEN BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR —PUBLISHER’S WEEKLY ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR —VULTURE “Daisy Johnson is the demon offspring of Shirley Jackson and Stephen King.” —The Observer (London)“Builds a gothic plot to an artful and shocking climax.” —The New York Times“Ends with a magnificent twist.” —The Boston Globe From a Booker Prize finalist and international literary star: a blazing portrait of one darkly riveting sibling relationship, from the inside out. Something unspeakable and unbearable happened between sisters July and September, just 10 months apart and named for their birth months. What presents as not-quite a thriller, not quite-a novel, not-quite horror or prose poetry, it is but all of those things, and that’s what makes SISTERS (Riverhead, August 2020) such a slippery one to pin down. Reading this story is strange and fantastical, a bit like a …

Sylvia True talks about her astonishing novel-based-on-a-true story, WHERE MADNESS LIES, combining elements of historical fiction, medicine, mental illness, motherhood, secrets, more

By Leslie Lindsay Such a beautifully tragic and heart-wrenching tale of hope and redemption, a lesser-known slice of WWII, combining intergenerational trauma, mental illness, secrets, more. ~WRITERS INTERVIEWING WRITERS|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ Spotlight: Women’s Historical Fiction I was absolutely struck by the themes and ideas—and writing—in WHERE MADNESS LIES (Top Hat Books, February 1 2021) by Sylvia True, which is a gorgeous and devastating voyage into the madness of madness, tracing the Nazis’ view of the morally disgusting idea of racial hygiene, but also eradicating ‘any life not worth living,’ such as those deemed feebleminded, mentally ill, sexually degenerate, more. Alternating between the 1980s Massachusetts, and 1930s Germany, with a brief stint in Switzerland, WHERE MADNESS LIES is so beautifully rendered. I was in awe at the breadth of this book–in terms of historical accuracy, emotional intelligence, compelling voice/characters, how it’s based on a true story, and so much more. This story is hauntingly compelling, devastating, and horrifying, yet there’s a glimmer of hope dangling from a pearl. WHERE MADNESS LIES is achingly honest and masterful, a page-turner with fully developed characters and timelines, each …

A murder? An accident? A cold-case or more? Megan Goldin’s deliciously dark and creepy follow-up to last summer’s explosive debut thriller THE NIGHT SWIM featuring a podcast, a small town, and secrets

By Leslie Lindsay  Deliciously dark and creepy mystery featuring a true crime podcast–a brutal cold case, and so much more.  ~WEEKEND READING SPOTLIGHT| ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ Last summer, Megan Goldin’s explosive debut thriller, THE ESCAPE ROOM was called ‘addictive’ by Time Magazine; Louise Penny called it, “Simply revienting” and Harlan Coben said, “Gripping and unforgettable.” This August, Goldin is back with her brilliant follow-up, THE NIGHT SWIM (St. Martin’s Press, August 4th). Quick Take: Twenty years ago, a young woman was assaulted and found dead. Her terrified sister never revealed what she witnessed that night. Today, in the same town, another woman is brutally attached and the town’s golden boy is accused. Rachel Krall is covering the trail for her hit podcast, “Guilty or Not Guilty,” which became an overnight sensation making Rachel a household name. Officially, Jenny Stills tragically drowned all those years ago. But letters that are resurfacing suggest she was murdered–and when Rachel starts asking questions, no one wants to answer. Past and present start to collide as Rachel begins to …

Stunning literary fiction about race, class, family, secrets, injustice, more in Anissa Gray’s gorgeously rendered debut, THE CARE AND FEEDING OF RAVENOUSLY HUNGRY GIRLS, now in paperback

By Leslie Lindsay Everybody’s hungry in THE CARE AND FEEDING OF RAVENOUSLY HUNGRY GIRLS…daughters who yearn for mothers, sisters who need sisters… ~FICTION SPOTLIGHT|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~  NOW AVAILABLE IN PAPERBACK!  One of the most anticipated reads of 2019 Vogue, Vanity Fair, Washington Post, Buzzfeed, Essence, Bustle, HelloGiggles and Cosmo! The poignant and emotionally affecting debut novel by CNN journalist Anissa Gray, THE CARE AND FEEDING OF RAVENOUSLY HUNGRY GIRLS (Berkley Trade Paperback, January 2020) is such an exquisite read about class, family, love, and more. Embraced by booksellers and librarians and endorsed by authors like Terry McMillan and Delia Owens, the novel is a powerful exploration of what it means to be middle class in today’s America—and what it feels like to be an outsider in your family and community. “If you enjoyed An American Marriage by Tayari Jones, read The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls…an absorbing commentary on love, family and forgiveness.” —The Washington Post  Gray grew up a pastor’s daughter in a small western Michigan town and drew from her experiences to create the intimately familiar world of the Butler family. Told from the alternating perspectives of sisters Althea,Viola, and Lillian, THE CARE AND FEEDING OF RAVENOUSLY HUNGRY …

What if you were 16 and just learned you were born without a uterus? That’s what happened to Susan Rudnick–here she talks about this and more in her memoir about her disabled sister, EDNA’S GIFT

By Leslie Lindsay Moving memoir about two sisters–both of whom are struggling with a loss–connect and remain whole.  When they were young, Susan and Edna, were inseparable. Growing up in the 1950s-1960s New York, they were the children of Nazi refugee parents, and became one another’s first friend. Fiercely dedicated and loyal, they protected one another. Both girls are operating on some sort of deficit–that is, Susan had no uterus (though she didn’t know this until she was nearly 16) and Edna struggles with physical and mental challenges.  When Edna is sent to live at a community for other like-minded individuals, Susan began grappling with the fact that she would never menstruate, never give birth. Yet, through their intertwining relationship, Edna becomes Susan’s biggest advocate, her best teacher –reminding her sister, that if you just remain open to opportunities, strength, joy, and wisdom just might be the end result. EDNA’S GIFT (She Writes Press, June 4 2019) is about living a life without regrets.  Edna’s Gift is an honest, unwavering love story between two sisters—one of which has developmental delays. Rudnick’s writing had me …

Can one ever escape the ‘family roles’ we’re given? Lynda Cohen Loigman explores this and more in her smashing historical family drama set in WWII

By Leslie Lindsay  Captivating and stunning examination of family dysfunction, disharmony, sisterhood, and WWII in Lynda Cohen Loigman’s THE WARTIME SISTERS.    I had such admiration for Ms. Loigman’s debut, THE TWO-FAMILY HOUSE (2016), and was delighted to see that she chose to continue her writing journey into historical fiction; she truly shines when exploring complicated familial relationships, and it makes for such authentic writing. Now, Lynda returns with her second novel, THE WARTIME SISTERS (St. Martin’s Press, Jan 22 2019) and it’s every bit as good–if not better–than her first. This is a mesmerizing tale of sisterhood, lies, betrayal, rivalries, motherhood, withheld communication, even religion. Told in alternating POVs with distinct places and time periods (1930s Brooklyn; 1940s Springfield, MA), the voices truly sing.  Ruth and Millie have never been close–not as toddlers sharing a bedroom in their Brooklyn apartment, not as teenagers navigating suitors and school (Ruth was the homely but smart sister and Millie the less-studious gorgeous sister), and certainly not as mothers with young children of their own. Ruth has always been the ‘responsible older sister’ who had to …

Special Pub Day Edition: EVERYTHING HERE IS BEAUTIFUL by Mira T. Lee now in Paperback

By Leslie Lindsay  Now in trade paperback! A brave, unflinching debut about the tenuous bonds of mental illness, how we define ‘family,’ immigration, and so much more.  EVERYTHING HERE IS BEAUTIFUL is one of those literary masterpieces that will captivate and enthrall readers everywhere, perhaps for very different reasons. There’s so much about this book I love–the razor-sharp writing, the way I was transported to another world (South America/Ecuador, Switzerland), and back again (NYC, Minnesota), and then there’s the breadth of scope: mental illness, sisters, love, who we call ‘family,’ life and death, as well as loss and rejuvenation. Told in alternating, highly distinct POVs from several main characters: Miranda: the older sister who has always been the “responsible one;” Lucia: whose free-spirited nature is dampened by her mental illness; Yonah: the Israeli shopkeeper and first husband of Lucia; Manuel: Lucia’s boyfriend, and father of her child. EVERYTHING HERE IS BEAUTIFUL may be best described as a literary family drama (spanning years and continents) with a mental illness theme (and its treatment) as well as an immigration (and cultural displacement) undercurrent.  I’m in awe with Mira T. …