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The Melting Seasonby Jami Attenberg
Synopses & Reviews
A tender, provocative story about the power of friendship, the thrill of self-discovery, and the strength it takes to escape the past.
Catherine Madison is headed West with a suitcase full of cash that isn't hers. She's just left the only home she's ever known, a small town in Nebraska, after the only man she had ever known, her husband, Thomas, deserted her. She's also left behind her deepest, most shameful secrets-among them a dysfunctional family she's never quite been able to escape and a marriage whose most intimate moments have plagued her with self-doubt. On the road, she was going to become a new person. Or so she thought.
But running away from the past isn't as easy as she had hoped. When Catherine reaches Las Vegas, she forms surprising new friendships that compel her to reveal what she had sworn she'd keep hidden, and teach her what human connection really means. Armed with this new knowledge, she is finally emboldened to uncover the truth about her family, come to understand what destroyed her marriage, and prevent her troubled sister from repeating her mistakes.
Deeply compassionate and unflinchingly bold, The Melting Season is the story of an indelible character's journey from isolation to belonging, as well as an honest look at the things we feel we deserve from our lives- and how far we will go to find them.
"From the author of The Kept Man comes an uneven road story about a woman fleeing from her past. Catherine 'Moonie' Madison, 25, runs away from her stifling smalltown Nebraska life with a suitcase full of her husband's money, ending up in Las Vegas, where she finds a confidante and partner in crime in Valka, who, like her, is looking for escape. As the story progresses, Attenberg fills in Moonie's backstory via flashbacks; unfortunately, Moonie's hard-luck story is far less interesting than her adventures in Las Vegas. What resonates is her friendship with Valka, her dreamlike evening with a crew of hedonistic celebrity impersonators and her sometimes nave observations on being outside of Nebraska for the first time. There's a promise of redemption as Moonie begins piecing together an unconventional life and stand-in family, but there's a certain deliberateness to the empowerment theme that makes it feel less than real. There are some nice moments, and Attenberg has a knack for poignant description, but the author seems distracted from the story she set out to tell." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Catherine Madison leaves the only home she's ever known, after her husband, Thomas, deserts her. Deeply compassionate and unflinchingly bold, "The Melting Season" is the story of an indelible character's journey from isolation to belonging.
From one of today's hottest novelists and author of the bestselling The Middlesteins -- a provocative story about friendship and self-discovery.
Catherine Madison left her small town in Nebraska after her husband deserted her. She's also left behind her most shameful secrets-of a family and a marriage that have plagued her with self-doubt. On the road, she's trying to become a new person. But running away from the past isn't as easy as she'd hoped. Her journey leads her to Las Vegas, where she forms surprising new friendships that compel her to reveal what she'd sworn she'd keep hidden, and teach her what human connection really means.
About the Author
Jami Attenberg is the author of the novels The Middlesteins and The Kept Man and of the story collection Instant Love. She has written for The New York Times, New York, Salon, Nylon, Print, Nerve, and others. Chicago native, she lives in Brooklyn, New York.
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