Synopses & Reviews
From the New York Times bestselling author of The Women, a historical novel about three women’s lives on a California island
On a tiny, desolate, windswept island off the coast of Southern California, two families, one in the 1880s and one in the 1930s, come to start new lives and pursue dreams of self-reliance and freedom. Their extraordinary stories, full of struggle and hope, are the subject of T. C. Boyle’s haunting new novel.
Thirty-eight-year-old Marantha Waters arrives on San Miguel on New Year’s Day 1888 to restore her failing health. Joined by her husband, a stubborn, driven Civil War veteran who will take over the operation of the sheep ranch on the island, Marantha strives to persevere in the face of the hardships, some anticipated and some not, of living in such brutal isolation. Two years later their adopted teenage daughter, Edith, an aspiring actress, will exploit every opportunity to escape the captivity her father has imposed on her. Time closes in on them all and as the new century approaches, the ranch stands untenanted. And then in March 1930, Elise Lester, a librarian from New York City, settles on San Miguel with her husband, Herbie, a World War I veteran full of manic energy. As the years go on they find a measure of fulfillment and serenity; Elise gives birth to two daughters, and the family even achieves a celebrity of sorts. But will the peace and beauty of the island see them through the impending war as it had seen them through the Depression?Rendered in Boyle’s accomplished, assured voice, with great period detail and utterly memorable characters, this is a moving and dramatic work from one of America’s most talented and inventive storytellers.
A dazzling novel of Frank Lloyd Wright, told from the point of view of the women in his life
Having brought to life eccentric cereal king John Harvey Kellogg in The Road to Wellville and sex researcher Alfred Kinsey in The Inner Circle, T.C. Boyle now turns his fictional sights on an even more colorful and outlandish character: Frank Lloyd Wright. Boyleas account of Wrightas life, as told through the experiences of the four women who loved him, blazes with his trademark wit and invention. Wrightas life was one long howling struggle against the bonds of convention, whether aesthetic, social, moral, or romantic. He never did what was expected and despite the overblown scandals surrounding his amours and very public divorces and the financial disarray that dogged him throughout his career, he never let anything get in the way of his larger-than-life appetites and visions. Wrightas triumphs and defeats were always tied to the women he loved: the Montenegrin beauty Olgivanna Milanoff; the passionate Southern belle Maud Miriam Noel; the spirited Mamah Cheney, tragically killed; and his young first wife, Kitty Tobin. In The Women, T.C. Boyleas protean voice captures these very different women and, in doing so, creates a masterful ode to the creative life in all its complexity and grandeur.
Having brought to life eccentric cereal king John Harvey Kellogg in "The Road to Wellville" and sex researcher Alfred Kinsey in "The Inner Circle," Boyle now turns his fictional sights on an even more colorful and outlandish character: Frank Lloyd Wright.
From "America's most imaginative contemporary novelist" (Newsweek), a novel of Frank Lloyd Wright and the women in his life.
Having brought to life eccentric cereal king John Harvey Kellogg in The Road to Wellville and sex researcher Alfred Kinsey in The Inner Circle, T.C. Boyle now turns his fictional sights on an even more colorful and outlandish character: Frank Lloyd Wright. Boyle's incomparable account of Wright's life is told through the experiences of the four women who loved him. There's the Montenegrin beauty Olgivanna Milanoff, the passionate Southern belle Maude Miriam Noel, the tragic Mamah Cheney, and his young first wife, Kitty Tobin. Blazing with his trademark wit and inventiveness, Boyle deftly captures these very different women and the creative life in all its complexity.
The Paris Wife
was only the beginning of the story . . .
Paula McLains New York Timesbestselling novel piqued readers interest about Ernest Hemingways romantic life. But Hadley was only one of four women married, in turn, to the legendary writer. Just as T.C. Boyles bestseller The Women completed the picture begun by Nancy Horans Loving Frank, Naomi Woods Mrs. Hemingway tells the story of how it was to love, and be loved by, the most famous and dashing writer of his generation. As each wife struggles with his mistress for Ernests heart, and a place in his bed, each marriage slips from tenderness to treachery. Each Mrs. Hemingway thought it would last forever. Each one was wrong.
Told in four parts and populated with members of the fabled Lost Generation”including Gertrude Stein, Ezra Pound, and F. Scott FitzgeraldMrs. Hemingway interweaves the love letters, diaries, and telegrams of four very different women into one spellbinding tale.
The Paris Wife
was only the beginning of the story . . .
A New York Times Book Review Editor's Choice
Paula McLains New York Timesbestselling novel piqued readers interest about Ernest Hemingways romantic life. But Hadley was only one of four women married, in turn, to the legendary writer. Just as T.C. Boyles bestseller The Women completed the picture begun by Nancy Horans Loving Frank, Naomi Woods Mrs. Hemingway tells the story of how it was to love, and be loved by, the most famous and dashing writer of his generation. Hadley, Pauline, Martha and Mary: each Mrs. Hemingway thought their love would last forever; each one was wrong.
Told in four parts and based on real love letters and telegrams, Mrs. Hemingway reveals the explosive love triangles that wrecked each of Hemingway's marriages. Spanning 1920s bohemian Paris through 1960s Cold War America, populated with members of the fabled "Lost Generation," Mrs. Heminway is a riveting tale of passion, love, and heartbreak.
"Dazzling and gorgeously written, Frances and Bernard features a pair of brilliant, complicated writers who present themselves to each other in letters that form the most exciting epistolary novel in recent memory. A slim book, it still seems to say all of the important things about friendship, faith, love, the literary life, and especially the costs of living as an artist while still inhabiting the real world. Its a marvel." —Ann Packer, author of The Dive from Clausens Pier and Songs Without Words
Frances and Bernard meet in the summer of 1957. Afterward, he writes her a letter. Soon they are immersed in the kind of fast, deep friendship that can change the course of our lives. They find their way to New York and, for a few whirling years, each other. The city is a wonderland for young people with dreams: cramped West Village kitchens, parties stocked with the sharp-witted and glamorous, taxis that can take you anywhere at all, long talks along the Hudson as the lights of the Empire State Building blink on above. Inspired by the lives of Flannery OConnor and Robert Lowell, Frances and Bernard imagines, through new characters with charms entirely their own, what else might have happened. In the grandness of the fall, can we love another person so completely that we lose our dreams? In witness to all the wonder of kindred spirits and bittersweet romance, Frances and Bernard is a tribute to the power of friendship and the people who help us discover who we are.
About the Author
Naomi Wood studied for her undergraduate degree at Cambridge and has a master's and doctorate from the University of East Anglia. Her research for Mrs. Hemingway took her from the British Library to the Library of Congress, and to Ernest Hemingway's homes and old haunts in Chicago, Paris, Antibes, Key West, and Havana. She is also the author of The Godless Boys, which was published in the UK. Naomi was awarded the 2012 inaugural Eccles Centre British Library Writer in Resident Award. She teaches at the University of East Anglia and lives in London. Mrs. Hemingway is her American debut.