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Inheriting Edith: A Novel Kindle Edition
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From the Publisher
Zoe Fishman Talks With Joshilyn Jackson
Joshilyn Jackson is the author of The Opposite Of Everyone, among other novels.
Joshilyn Jackson (JJ): Liza feels like a composite character of many larger-than-life bestselling female authors. Did you model her after any particular female writer(s)?
Zoe Fishman (ZF): Not so much a female writer in particular, but more just the female creative force, which sometimes is accompanied by depression or in Liza’s case, bipolar disease. I wanted to write about the way her diagnosis complicated her creative process. Liza's decision to tamper with her medication and avoid the therapy she needed was largely because of her fear that without her imbalance, warts and all, her art would suffer.
JJ: In the hypothetical movie version of Inheriting Edith, who would you cast as Maggie, Liza, and Edith?
ZF: Ooh, I like this question. I would cast Kathryn Hahn as Maggie, Frances McDormand as Liza, and Ellen Burstyn as Edith.
JJ: Your book contains a really truthful depiction of the guilt and fear that comes in the package with parental (or maternal) love; Edith blames herself for Liza's passing, Maggie constantly worries about Lucy. Can you talk a little bit about how you balanced these negative family dynamics?
ZF: I think so. If you get lost in the minutiae, you can make yourself deeply unhappy as a parent—and I speak from personal experience. If you force yourself to take a step back and look at the bigger picture, as Edith and Maggie are eventually able to do, it's easier to be grateful for the important things: my child is laughing; my child is confident; my child is kind and thoughtful. It's not an easy feat in this lean-in-to-the-point-of-falling-on-your-face culture, but it's so important.
JJ: You introduced me to Sag Harbor, a gorgeous whaling village deep in Eastern Long Island. I loved my armchair travel to this fascinating, unfamiliar setting, and you really brought it to life. Was that through research, or is this place special to you?
ZF: I love Sag Harbor. When I was living in New York, good friends of mine had a weekend home there, and that blessed escape from the hectic pace of the city was heaven to me. The air; the light through the trees; floating aimlessly through the saltwater pool—it was just bliss. And the house that Edith, Liza and then Maggie and her daughter Lucy live in—it's my friends' home that I'm describing: this wonderfully eccentric Japanese pagoda in the trees, just down the road from the beach.
JJ: Many families struggle to care for loved ones with Alzheimer's. Maggie's offer to transcribe Edith’s memoirs as a means of easing her anxiety about the disease was a beautiful gesture. Where did you get the idea for that plot point?
ZF: Maggie began as a struggling writer to me in my mind—a woman who wanted to write but just couldn't, or wouldn't, prioritize it. As I wrote her more fully, I began to understand that this was because she had locked up so much of her past from herself. By not allowing herself to access it, she had in effect cut off her own creativity. When Edith comes along, desperate to cling to the very memories Maggie is so keen to erase, this mutually therapeutic idea just fit, like a puzzle piece. Maggie thinks she's helping Edith, and of course she is, but she’s helping herself too.
JJ: If you could inherit a house anywhere in the world, where would it be?
ZF: I'll take a pied-à-terre in Paris, please and thanks.
“A beautifully crafted story about second chances and life’s big surprises. Warm spirited and emotionally rich, INHERITING EDITH celebrates the fine line between friendship and family. These characters will tug at your heart.” (Jamie Brenner, author of The Wedding Sisters)
“A heartbreaking story about life, love, and friendship that you’ll want to devour in one sitting.” (Erin Duffy, author of BOND GIRL and LOST ALONG THE WAY) --This text refers to the paperback edition.
From the Back Cover
For years Maggie Sheets has been an invisible hand in the glittering homes of wealthy New York City clients, scrubbing, dusting, mopping and doing all she can to keep her head above water as a single mother. Everything changes when a former employer dies, leaving Maggie a staggering inheritance: a house in Sag Harbor. The catch? It comes with an inhabitant: the deceased’s eighty-two-year-old mother, Edith.
Edith has Alzheimer’s—or so the doctors tell her—but she remembers exactly how her daughter, Liza, could light up a room or bring dark clouds in her wake. And now Liza’s gone, by her own hand, and Edith has been left—like a chaise or strand of pearls—to a poorly dressed young woman with a toddler in tow.
Maggie and Edith are both certain this arrangement will be an utter disaster. But as summer days wane, a tenuous bond forms and Edith, who feels the urgency of her diagnosis, shares a secret that she’s held close for five decades, launching Maggie on a mission that might just lead them each to what they are looking for.--This text refers to the paperback edition.
- Publication Date : October 18, 2016
- Print Length : 299 pages
- Word Wise : Enabled
- ASIN : B01ARKR104
- File Size : 880 KB
- Publisher : William Morrow Paperbacks (October 18, 2016)
- Language: : English
- Enhanced Typesetting : Enabled
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #38,343 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews: