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Summer’s Hottest Fiction

The authors of these highly anticipated reads detail the people and places at the heart of their new novels

The One & Only
Emily Giffin

“I’ve always wanted to write a book set in the world of sports, and there are few arenas more colorful than Texas football. But at its heart The One & Only is about relationships: friendships, mother-daughter relationships and especially romantic relationships. One of the themes that really inspired this story is the notion of unconventional love. Society sometimes seems to have such narrow constraints, and I wanted to explore the idea of a woman falling in love with the one person she shouldn’t.”

 

The Vacationers
Emma Straub

“I’d been writing about these characters for years, across time and space–the mother character as a teenager, and then in the future, at her death. It took me a long time to figure out where to cement them, and where. Once Mallorca came into the picture, the story came together quickly. Sometimes that’s all you need, the right setting. And tapas!”

 

 

The Actress
Amy Sohn

“I was drawn to Los Angeles because I have traveled there frequently, pitching television pilots and going to meetings. I chose to tell the story of Maddy Freed and Steven Weller because we are all fascinated and mystified by Hollywood marriages. I wanted to write about the everyday strangeness of marriage against the backdrop of an extraordinary coupling. We all make trade-offs in marriage, we all feel used or misunderstood, but with my characters Maddy and Steven, these issues are heightened, with money, power, secrets, lies and business.”

 

The Heiresses
Sara Shepard

“I lived in New York in my twenties, though not The Heiresses’ New York, a world of access and privilege and glamour. It was fun placing these characters on the same streets and in the same shops and restaurants that I’ve visited lots of times, knowing that their lives and perspectives are so different than my own. And yet, I think the characters suffer with some universal struggles: problems with relationships, understanding their families, trying to figure out who they are.”

 

California
Edan Lepucki

“I’m drawn to stories about people settling in the wilderness. Such stories contain danger and magic in equal parts. I also wanted to write about a marriage within a world that looked nothing like my own. What would marriage be like at the end of the world? Frida and Cal are flawed, complicated and relatable, and it was through imagining their inner lives that the outer one, this ruined, future one, came alive.”

 

How to Tell Toledo From the Night Sky
Lydia Netzer

“Toledo is magical and mysterious. It’s familiar enough that people believe they know it, but unfamiliar enough they might believe there really  is a Toledo Institute of Astronomy, a hub of science and philosophy for the whole world. With George and Irene, there is a reversal from expected gender roles. Instead of a practical, rational man and a dreamy girl, you have a ruthlessly pragmatic woman and a hunky guy who happens to believe in multiple gods.”

 

MORE:

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