Writers & lovers A novel

Lily King

Book - 2020

"Blindsided by her mother's sudden death, and wrecked by a recent love affair, Casey Peabody has arrived in Massachusetts in the summer of 1997 without a plan. Her mail consists of wedding invitations and final notices from debt collectors. A former child golf prodigy, she now waits tables in Harvard Square and rents a tiny, moldy room at the side of a garage where she works on the novel she's been writing for six years. At thirty-one, Casey is still clutching onto something nearl...y all her old friends have let go of: the determination to live a creative life. When she falls for two very different men at the same time, her world fractures even more. Casey's fight to fulfill her creative ambitions and balance the conflicting demands of art and life is challenged in ways that push her to the brink."--Provided by publisher.

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FICTION/King Lily
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Subjects
Genres
Romance fiction
Bildungsromans
Published
New York, NY : Grove Press 2020.
Edition
First edition. First Grove Atlantic edition
Language
English
Physical Description
324 pages ; 22 cm
ISBN
9780802148537
0802148530
Main Author
Lily King (author)
Review by Booklist Reviews

*Starred Review* Grieving her mother's recent death, newly heartbroken, and shouldering crushing student debt, Casey lives in her brother's annoying friend's moldy Boston coach house, working on her novel in the mornings and waitressing at a swanky Cambridge restaurant at seemingly all other hours. A book-release party introduces two points of the love triangle Casey becomes entangled in: novelist Oscar, and one of his workshop students, Silas. Widowed, Oscar approaches Casey with a mix of awe and apprehension, and Casey falls easily into his life with his two young sons. Silas, meanwhile, intrigues with his humor, chipped tooth, and leather jacket, but hits the road just when he shouldn't. The romance will draw readers in, but Casey's journey as a writer, alone, is the book's strongest magnet. Despite being reminded of the foolhardy notion that women writers could have anything to say at all, she finishes a draft and isn't prepared for what this unleashes. With deep and sensationally wrought feeling—Casey feels her anxiety as swarming bees, and as if she swallowed her dead mother—King (Euphoria, 2014) leaves no barrier between readers and smart, genuine, cynical, and funny Casey. A closely observed tale of finding oneself, and one's voice, while working through grief. Copyright 2020 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Booklist Reviews

*Starred Review* Grieving her mother's recent death, newly heartbroken, and shouldering crushing student debt, Casey lives in her brother's annoying friend's moldy Boston coach house, working on her novel in the mornings and waitressing at a swanky Cambridge restaurant at seemingly all other hours. A book-release party introduces two points of the love triangle Casey becomes entangled in: novelist Oscar, and one of his workshop students, Silas. Widowed, Oscar approaches Casey with a mix of awe and apprehension, and Casey falls easily into his life with his two young sons. Silas, meanwhile, intrigues with his humor, chipped tooth, and leather jacket, but hits the road just when he shouldn't. The romance will draw readers in, but Casey's journey as a writer, alone, is the book's strongest magnet. Despite being reminded of the foolhardy notion that women writers could have anything to say at all, she finishes a draft and isn't prepared for what this unleashes. With deep and sensationally wrought feeling—Casey feels her anxiety as swarming bees, and as if she swallowed her dead mother—King (Euphoria, 2014) leaves no barrier between readers and smart, genuine, cynical, and funny Casey. A closely observed tale of finding oneself, and one's voice, while working through grief. Copyright 2020 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Library Journal Reviews

A former golf prodigy devastated by her mother's death and a bad affair, Casey Peabody waits tables in Harvard Square, lives in a musty hole-in-the-wall, and continues work on the novel she's been writing for six years. At 31, she's been mostly left behind by friends who've dropped their dreams for security, but even as she stays loyal to the creative life, she falls for two very different men. King's first novel since 2014's Euphoria, a New York Times Top Ten book and National Book Critics Circle finalist that sold over 400,000 copies in North America; expect major promo and a 20-city tour. Copyright 2019 Library Journal.

Review by Library Journal Reviews

King, a National Book Critics Circle Award finalist for Euphoria, delves into what is frequently first-novel territory but with the skill and assurance of a seasoned pro. As the title suggests, the narrative follows Casey, a 31-year-old writer living in Boston, who is attempting to complete her first novel while debating between two potential romantic partners, both of whom are also writers. Successful author Oscar is widowed with two sons, while Silas is a quirky aspirant with whom Casey shares a strong sexual charge. A stressful day job as a server at a high-end restaurant, a recent heartbreak, health and financial concerns, and grief over her mother's recent death all add to Casey's dilemma over whether to choose the more stable and established Oscar or the seemingly less reliable Silas. With the novel set in the 1990s, missed and unanswered phone calls drive the plot in ways that wouldn't be possible in today's world. VERDICT While never minimizing the seriousness of Casey's personal problems, the book is also funny and romantic and hard to put down, full of well-observed details of restaurant culture and writer's workshops. It's hard to imagine a reader who wouldn't root for Casey. [See Prepub Alert, 9/9/19.].—Christine DeZelar-Tiedman, Univ. of Minnesota Libs., Minneapolis Copyright 2020 Library Journal.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

King's, elegant, droll follow-up to Euphoria traces an aspiring novelist's effort to find herself after turning 30 and losing her mother. After a series of lovers and moves, Casey Peabody ends up alone in Boston, Mass., with nothing to hold onto. Her commitment to writing each morning keeps her at a dead-end waitressing job that barely covers her grungy rented room and the minimum payments for the massive debt she incurred for her undergraduate and graduate degrees. Her devastating grief for her mother, whose unexplained death occurred while vacationing abroad, can only be assuaged, she feels, by finishing the novel she's been working on for six years ("I don't write because I think I have something to say. I write because if I don't, everything feels even worse"). She begins dating the successful writer Oscar Kolton, as well as one of his students, and finds new inspiration in the romances ("Usually a man in my life slows my work down, but it turns out two men give me fresh energy"). Facing the impending loss of her apartment, she fears that living with one of her lovers would expose her "blighted" dysfunction. While King's resolutions of Casey's financial, emotional, and creative challenges don't feel uniformly convincing, the nimble, astute narration appeals. This meditation on the passing of youth is touching and ruefully funny. Agent: Julie Barer, the Book Group. (Mar.) Copyright 2019 Publishers Weekly.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

A follow-up to the award-winning Euphoria follows the story of a former child golf prodigy-turned-unemployed writer whose determination to live a creative life is complicated by her relationships with two very different men.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

"Blindsided by her mother's sudden death, and wrecked by a recent love affair, Casey Peabody has arrived in Massachusetts in the summer of 1997 without a plan. Her mail consists of wedding invitations and final notices from debt collectors. A former child golf prodigy, she now waits tables in Harvard Square and rents a tiny, moldy room at the side of a garage where she works on the novel she's been writing for six years. At thirty-one, Casey is still clutching onto something nearly all her old friends have let go of: the determination to live a creative life. When she falls for two very different men at the same time, her world fractures even more. Casey's fight to fulfill her creative ambitions and balance the conflicting demands of art and life is challenged in ways that push her to the brink. Writers & Lovers follows Casey-a smart and achingly vulnerable protagonist-in the last days of a long youth, a time when every element of her life comes to a crisis. Written with King's trademark humor, heart, and intelligence, Writers & Lovers is a transfixing novel that explores the terrifying and exhilarating leap between the end of one phase of life and the beginning of another"--

Review by Publisher Summary 3

An extraordinary new novel of art, love, and ambition from Lily King, the New York Times bestselling author of Euphoria

Review by Publisher Summary 4

"I loved this book not just from the first chapter or the first page but from the first paragraph... The voice is just so honest and riveting and insightful about creativity and life." —Curtis Sittenfeld#ReadWithJenna Book Club Pick as Featured on TodayEmma Roberts' Belletrist Book Club PickA New York Times Book Review’s Group Text SelectionFollowing the breakout success of her critically acclaimed and award-winning novel Euphoria, Lily King returns with another instant New York Times bestseller: an unforgettable portrait of an artist as a young woman.Blindsided by her mother’s sudden death, and wrecked by a recent love affair, Casey Peabody has arrived in Massachusetts in the summer of 1997 without a plan. Her mail consists of wedding invitations and final notices from debt collectors. A former child golf prodigy, she now waits tables in Harvard Square and rents a tiny, moldy room at the side of a garage where she works on the novel she’s been writing for six years. At thirty-one, Casey is still clutching onto something nearly all her old friends have let go of: the determination to live a creative life. When she falls for two very different men at the same time, her world fractures even more. Casey’s fight to fulfill her creative ambitions and balance the conflicting demands of art and life is challenged in ways that push her to the brink.Writers & Lovers follows Casey—a smart and achingly vulnerable protagonist—in the last days of a long youth, a time when every element of her life comes to a crisis. Written with King’s trademark humor, heart, and intelligence, Writers & Lovers is a transfixing novel that explores the terrifying and exhilarating leap between the end of one phase of life and the beginning of another.

Review by Publisher Summary 5

#ReadWithJenna Book Club Pick as Featured on TodayEmma Roberts Belletrist Book Club PickA New York Times Book Review’s Group Text Selection "I loved this book not just from the first chapter or the first page but from the first paragraph... The voice is just so honest and riveting and insightful about creativity and life." —Curtis Sittenfeld  An extraordinary new novel of art, love, and ambition from Lily King, the New York Times bestselling author of Euphoria Following the breakout success of her critically acclaimed and award-winning novel Euphoria, Lily King returns with another instant New York Times bestseller: an unforgettable portrait of an artist as a young woman. Blindsided by her mother’s sudden death, and wrecked by a recent love affair, Casey Peabody has arrived in Massachusetts in the summer of 1997 without a plan. Her mail consists of wedding invitations and final notices from debt collectors. A former child golf prodigy, she now waits tables in Harvard Square and rents a tiny, moldy room at the side of a garage where she works on the novel she’s been writing for six years. At thirty-one, Casey is still clutching onto something nearly all her old friends have let go of: the determination to live a creative life. When she falls for two very different men at the same time, her world fractures even more. Casey’s fight to fulfill her creative ambitions and balance the conflicting demands of art and life is challenged in ways that push her to the brink. Writers & Lovers follows Casey—a smart and achingly vulnerable protagonist—in the last days of a long youth, a time when every element of her life comes to a crisis. Written with King’s trademark humor, heart, and intelligence, Writers & Lovers is a transfixing novel that explores the terrifying and exhilarating leap between the end of one phase of life and the beginning of another.