If you're looking for a summer read that's fast and exciting and really well-written, Wrong Highway is one of my top picks. Erica's a disenchanted housewife on Long Island circa the mid-1980s, when the jeans were tight, the hair was big, and Springsteen was on the radio. A combination of ennui and the desire to reach out to her troubled teenage nephew lead Erica down a road of increasingly reckless behavior, with tragic (but not irredeemable!) consequences for her family. Erica's an intriguing and thought-provokingly unlikeable character, and Gordon does a great job of building complicated secondary characters and strong relationships. You might be tempted to throw the book across the room a few times, when Erica makes her umpteenth bad choice, but you'll just go pick it up again because this is a story that begs to be finished. Recommended By Rhianna W., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
"Wrong Highway is a captivating debut novel." Kim Bissel, co-owner, Broadway Books
Erica Richards and Debbie Lassler are sisters. Both live in Dutch colonials three blocks apart in the Long Island suburb of West Meadow. Both are married with children. The similarity ends there.
Wrong Highway is a jaw-dropping story of domesticity on the skids in the late 1980s. The setting may be ordinary, but Wendy Gordon’s perspective and storytelling are anything but. Her carefully observed world of West Meadow is populated with characters who could be friends or neighbors, or even yourself—everyone shielding their big secrets in plain sight. Relationships entangle in unexpected ways while the ’80s soundtrack plays on. Life in Gordon’s suburbia careens out of control at breakneck speed as family members make all the wrong decisions for all the right reasons. Reading Wrong Highway is like witnessing a traffic accident and not being able to tear your gaze away.
About the Author
Wendy Gordon grew up in Bethesda, Maryland, and lived in Boston, Chicago, and New York before finding her true home on the West Coast. She received a B.S. in Nutrition from Simmons College and an M.S. in Clinical Nutrition from the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine.
She has been a journalist for over twenty-five years, publishing in newspapers, magazines, and on the internet. She lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband and children. This is her first book.