Dear Great Book Guru, This weekend is the Sea Cliff Beach Committee's annual Beach Palozza and I can't wait! It will be Saturday, July 13 from 11am until 11pm with bands, contests, and great food, but when I am at the beach, I must always have something to read. Do you have a recommendation?
Sea Cliff Beach Palooza Fan
Dear Beach Palooza Fan, I just heard from Justin and Jenna DiPietro who are on the Beach Committee that this year's Palooza has an amazing lineup of bands plus activities for everyone from toddlers to nonagenarians. A book I think you will enjoy reading at the event is Claire Messud's THE WOMAN UPSTAIRS, the story of Nora Eldridge, a forty-two year old third grade teacher. She is grieving her mother's death, she regrets not pursuing a career as an artist, and she fears- most of all -that she will be "the woman upstairs" colorless, nameless, always on the fringe of other people's lives… until into her life come the Shahids: husband, wife, and eight year Reza. Glamorous, successful people, the Shahids become Nora's obsession. The book opens with an angry tirade by her, five years after having met the Shahids, but most of the book is devoted to the year that she and the Shahids' lives intersected . This is a psychological thriller of sorts because we are never sure if Nora is a credible witness to the events she describes. She might be, but then again, maybe not. A disturbing portrait that rings true on many levels!