Friends and Strangers: A novel by J. Courtney Sullivan – CULTURAL HERITAGE BOOKS


Friends and Strangers: A novel by J. Courtney Sullivan


Regular price $ 33.00

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Publisher : Knopf
Binding : Hardcover
Pages : 416
Publishing Date : 6/30/2020
Condition : BRAND NEW
A TODAY SHOW #ReadWithJenna BOOK CLUB PICK!An insightful, hilarious, and compulsively readable novel about a complicated friendship between two women who are at two very different stages in life, from the best-selling author of Maine and Saints for All Occasions (named one of the Washington Post's Ten Best Books of the Year and a New York Times Critics' Pick). Elisabeth, an accomplished journalist and new mother, is struggling to adjust to life in a small town after nearly twenty years in New York City. Alone in the house with her infant son all day (and awake with him much of the night), she feels uneasy, adrift. She neglects her work, losing untold hours to her Brooklyn moms' Facebook group, her "influencer" sister's Instagram feed, and text messages with the best friend she never sees anymore. Enter Sam, a senior at the local women's college, whom Elisabeth hires to babysit. Sam is struggling to decide between the path she's always planned on and a romantic entanglement that threatens her ambition. She's worried about student loan debt and what the future holds. In short order, they grow close. But when Sam finds an unlikely kindred spirit in Elisabeth's father-in-law, the true differences between the women's lives become starkly revealed and a betrayal has devastating consequences. A masterful exploration of motherhood, power dynamics, and privilege in its many forms, Friends and Strangers reveals how a single year can shape the course of a life. Review This well-drawn domestic drama explores with verve and an almost scientific rigor how friendships form, especially across generational and socio-economic lines. Elisabeth, an accomplished author, slips into suburban malaise after having a baby and moving from New York City to Philadelphia where she hires Sam, a self-possessed college senior, to babysit. Their relationship quickly gets complicated as Sam makes her way into Elisabeth’s world. The author charts with uncommon grace how we ‘pick’ people, that alchemical interplay of surprise and familiarity, esteem and envy, that makes us curious to know more. As the book cups hands around those first embers of connection, it’s hypnotic to watch the spark float into the open waters of real friendship where characters are as likely to be capsized by good intentions as unexpected consequences. —Katy Ball


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