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A Theory of Relativityby Jacquelyn Mitchard
Synopses & Reviews
A Conversation with Jacqueline Mitchard Q. Central to each of your novels is the idea that parenting takes many forms. You write about surrogate parents, adoptive parents, teenaged parents, parents who kidnap children and raise them as their own, and parents who seem indifferent to the children to whom they have given life. Why is this theme so important to you?
A. Obviously it's in part because I am a parent of six, aged two through twenty-five and a newborn grandma, of a five-week-old. But that fascination is much more subversive than my own history. As Scott Turow has said, the territory I cover is small but significant. Everything, from presidential scandals to border disputes, to school violence to teen promiscuity — in other words, all of the most intransigent social issues of our time — can be traced directly to the kinds of families we grew up in, the harbors that launched us.
Q. In this novel you write about the worst kind of loss: a child who dies before his or her parents. As a writer, how were you able to tackle this wrenching material?
Q. How has your newspaper column — which focuses on family-related issues — influenced your fiction, and vice versa?
Q. This story touches on so many different areas: family law, science, social work, the media. How did you research this novel?
Q. Do you feel that the laws discriminate against adopted children in this country? What other kinds of challenges do adopted children encounter?
Q. What are your own experiences with adoption? Have you, or adoptive parents you know, encountered the kinds of overt prejudice against adopted children that you describe in the novel? Are we as a country moving toward a greater acceptance of the adoption experience?
Q. How did your own sibling relationship and those of your children inform the writing of this novel?
Q. How did you decide what kind of girl Keefer would become? Did you always have her personality in mind, or did she develop along with the story line?
Q. Do you think about your characters after you're done writing them? Have you ever considered writing a sequel to this or any of your novels?
“[An] astonishing pleasure.”
“A graceful, moving, and compelling novel. Jacquelyn Mitchard at her finest.”
—Scott Turow, author of Innocent
Jacquelyn Mitchard's first novel, The Deep End of the Ocean, launched Oprah Winfrey's Book Club and riveted millions of readers worldwide. Now this supremely talented author offers her most powerful work to date. The emotional story of a fierce custody battle over a little girl, A Theory of Relativity is an unforgettable tale of love and the bonds that unite us all.
About the Author
Jacquelyn Mitchard is the New York Timesbestselling author of The Breakdown Lane, Twelve Times Blessed, and The Deep End of the Ocean, which was the very first book picked by Oprah for her book club. Now You See Herwas Jackie's debut young adult novel, and she also has several children's books to her credit: Baby Bat's Lullaby; Starring Prima!; Ready, Set, School!; and Rosalie, My Rosalie. Jackie lives outside Madison, Wisconsin, with her husband and eight children.
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