Synopses & Reviews
Fresh talent CJ Hauser makes her literary debut with The From-Aways
, an irreverent story of family, love, friendship, and lobsters, in the tradition of J. Courtney Sullivans Maine
and Richard Russos Empire Falls
Two women come to Maine in search of family, and find more love, heartbreak, and friendship, than theyd ever imagined one little fishing town could hold.
When Leah, a young New York reporter, meets Henry, she falls in love with everything about him: his freckles, green thumb, and tales of a Maine childhood. They marry quickly and Leah convinces Henry to move back to Menamon. As Leah builds a life there, reporting for The Menamon Star and vowing to be less of an emotional screw-up, the newlyweds are shocked to discover that they dont know each other nearly so well as they thought they did.
When Quinns mother dies, she tracks down the famous folk-singer father shes never known, in Menamon. Scrappy and smart-mouthed, Quinn gets a job at the local paper, an apartment above the town diner, and tries to shore up the courage to meet her father. But falling in love with her roommate, Rosie, was never part of the plan.
These two unruly womens work relationship at The Star deepens into best-friendship when they stumble onto a story that shakes sleepy Menamon—and holds damaging repercussions for Leahs husband and Quinns roommate both. As the town descends into turmoil, both women must decide what kind of lives they are willing to fight for.
“CJ Hausers debut novel, THE FROM-AWAYS, is as charming, salty and fresh as its setting in small-town Maine. Through her spunky heroines, Leah and Quinn, who have both come to Maine to find roots, Hauser tells an affecting story about lobsters, loyalty and love.” Elliott Holt, author of You Are One of Them
“In THE FROM-AWAYS, CJ Hauser introduces us to Menamon, Maine, a town of wisecracking fisherman, activist waitresses, and secret fathers, with such deftness we immediately know and care for it like locals...I loved spending time in Menamon, and was sorry when I had to go.” Marie-Helene Bertino, author of SAFE AS HOUSES and 2 A.M. AT THE CAT'S PAJAMAS
“THE FROM-AWAYS is populated by twenty-somethings running from and in search of family, by people passionately in pursuit of home. CJ Hauser has written a wise, lovely, luminous novel about love and work and leaving New York.” Joshua Henkin, author of The World Without You
“I was immediately pulled into this enchanting debut novel by the wit of CJ Hausers prose, her sharp dialogue, and her honesty in portraying the journey of young women trying to find their place in the world.” Vendela Vida, author of The Lovers and Let the Northern Lights Erase Your Name
“This big-hearted story about small-town Maine captivated me from the first page...Filled with humor and poetry and complicated characters who love foolishly and too much.” Christina Baker Kline, New York Times-bestselling author of Orphan Train
“Hausers style is expressive, clever and compelling, and she offers readers a thoughtful and engaging debut.” Kirkus Reviews
“This impressively crafted first novel is likely to leave readers wanting both a Maine lobster dinner and more from [CJ Hauser].” Booklist
“Memorable.” Minneapolis Star Tribune
“Hausers story is a love letter to the town of Menamon, Maine. She writes her prose with such vivid descriptions that you feel you are walking the streets of the town...If you like a story with colorful characters who are delightfully flawed, then this is the book for you.” Tallahassee Democrat
Two young women come to Maine looking for family and find more love, heartbreak, and friendship than they ever imagined one little fishing town could hold
About the Author
CJ Hauser's fiction has appeared in Tin House, TriQuarterly, The Kenyon Review, Third Coast, SLICE, and Esquire. She is the 2010 recipient of McSweeney's Amanda Davis Highwire Fiction Award, the winner of the 2012 Jaimy Gordon Prize in Fiction, and the A Room of Her Own Foundations Orlando Prize. She was also a finalist in Esquire's Short Short Fiction Competition and shortlisted for the UK's Bridport Prize.
Hauser is a Brooklyn College MFA graduate and is currently a PhD candidate in The Florida State University's Creative Writing Program. Though ever and always a New-Englander in her heart, CJ currently lives in a little white house, beneath a very mossy oak, in Tallahassee, Florida.
CJ Hauser on PowellsBooks.Blog
There is, so often, a phantom book lurking behind a published novel. I know mine are haunted in this way. And so sometimes, when people ask how long it took to write Family of Origin
, I wonder: Should I count the two years I spent writing the phantom novel that came before? I think the answer might be yes...