Synopses & Reviews
A lyrical and romantic story of love, fate and family
In the high desert of the American southwest during the summer of 1982, the Finley family is awaiting the arrival of the baby boy they're due to adopt. Oliver, just seven, is eager for another playmate to join him and his sister in their idyll of swimming pools, climbing trees, and playing tag. But one hot afternoon, Dr. Finley dies suddenly and everything changes. Mrs. Finley, newly widowed, decides she cannot proceed with the adoption alone.
Twenty-one years later, Oliver believes he has finally found the brother his family was meant to adopt. Along the way, he also finds Miranda, an eccentric, charming photographer whose subjects are consenting strangers in their own homes after dark. Oliver and Miranda's love story collides with catastrophe when their worlds intersect in ways they could never have predicted.
A luminous, moving portrait of grief and atonement, romance and longing, Dear Strangers unearths the possibilities of hope and renewal in the unexpected bonds forged with family and strangers alike.
"This novel is a wonder: compelling, surprising, and peopled by vividly drawn and original characters who remind us that the most powerful stories can be the ones we tell ourselves."
-Ann Packer, author of The Dive from Clausen's Pier and Songs Without Words
"Dear Strangers is both lively and sober, engaging and thoughtfully provocative . . . [Mullins] empowers us to seek the remarkable in what we all too often overlook."
-Robert Woltman, Albuquerque Journal
A luminous, moving portrait of grief and atonement, romance and longing, "Dear Strangers" unearths the possibilities of hope and renewal in the unexpected bonds forged with family and strangers alike.
The acclaimed author of The Rug Merchant once again "empowers us to seek the remarkable in what we all too often overlook" (Albuquerque Journal)
As children, Oliver and Mary Finley awaited the arrival of their adopted baby brother-until their father's death shattered everything. Dear Strangers unfolds twenty-one years later, when attempts at a family reunion take a shocking turn, revealing hidden truths about the southwestern town where all of them came of age. Luminously written, with the taut emotional suspense of Dan Chaon and Kazuo Ishiguro, Meg Mullins weaves multiple perspectives into a masterful portrait of a community and the consequences of destiny and choice, grief and atonement, and the unexpected bonds formed with family and strangers alike.
About the Author
Meg Mullins holds an MFA from Columbia University. The short story that became the first chapter of her debut novel, The Rug Merchant, was selected by Sue Miller for The Best American Short Stories 2002.