Synopses & Reviews
"I grew up on a farm,"--the year is l974, the place Sweetriver College, and Beatrice Wolfe is telling the story of her life to the glamorous young professor Philippa Sayres. So begins the achingly funny, often heartbreaking story of Beatrice's quest to escape the gothic eccentricity of her family and find an authentic identity of her own.
Married in a misbegotten passion, her parents are totally unsuited to farming or to any kind of business. When they finally lose their "farm," Bea's family spirals out of control. Still under Philippa's spell, Bea moves to the city of Hartford and joins a lesbian community, and becomes so committed to her new gay identity that she barely notices shes falling in love with a man--a man just risen from the ashes of addiction, whose re-creation of himself she threatens to undo.
"As disconcerting and comically beautiful as its title. In polished, nearly Austenian prose, she blurs the lines between nostalgia and self-examination, inanity and tragedy, as the misguided Beatrice tries her hand at love--of all sorts."--The Village Voice
"Schmidt's first novel will comfortably share the shelf with works such as John Irving's The Hotel New Hampshire and Paul Theroux's Mosquito Coast...comic novels about closely knit families tragically run amok....Those who carry the baggage of childhood or continue to strive to please their parents on into adulthood will want to read this book."--Library Journal
"Energetic, garrulous, and funny...with characteristic affectionate yet biting wit."--The Washington Post
About the Author
Heidi Jon Schmidt
is the author of the acclaimed story collections The Rose Thieves
both available from Picador. She lives in Provincetown, Massachusetts.