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Writers and Lovers

by Lily King

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
6315327,250 (4.17)60
#ReadWithJenna Book Club Pick as Featured on Today Emma Roberts' Belletrist Book Club Pick A New York Times Book Review's Group Text Selection Following the breakout success of her critically acclaimed and award-winning novel Euphoria, Lily King returns with another instant New York Times bestseller: an unforgettable portrait of an artist as a young woman. Blindsided by her mother's sudden death, and wrecked by a recent love affair, Casey Peabody has arrived in Massachusetts in the summer of 1997 without a plan. Her mail consists of wedding invitations and final notices from debt collectors. A former child golf prodigy, she now waits tables in Harvard Square and rents a tiny, moldy room at the side of a garage where she works on the novel she's been writing for six years. At thirty-one, Casey is still clutching onto something nearly all her old friends have let go of: the determination to live a creative life. When she falls for two very different men at the same time, her world fractures even more. Casey's fight to fulfill her creative ambitions and balance the conflicting demands of art and life is challenged in ways that push her to the brink. Writers & Lovers follows Casey--a smart and achingly vulnerable protagonist--in the last days of a long youth, a time when every element of her life comes to a crisis. Written with King's trademark humor, heart, and intelligence, Writers & Lovers is a transfixing novel that explores the terrifying and exhilarating leap between the end of one phase of life and the beginning of another.… (more)

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Showing 1-5 of 51 (next | show all)
"I don't write because I think I have something to say. I write because if I don't, everything feels even worse."

31-year-old Casey Peabody, narrator of Writers & Lovers, is on an emotional rollercoaster. She's between her dreams and their realization as she doggedly pursues her desires - success as a writer, love, and family. She endures losses - her mother, her job, her apartment - and disappointments - men, men, and men. Lily doesn't write about the "what" so much as she writes about how it felt. I went along for the ride, and it was worth it for its emotional intelligence.

I listened to the audiobook narrated by Stacey Glemboski, borrowed from the library using hoopla.

Around the year in 52 books challenge notes:
#48. A book published in 2020 ( )
  Linda_Louise | Jan 20, 2021 |
Loved "Euphoria" by this author, but this left me completely cold. A single young woman in her 30's is trying to become a writer. She is currently a waitress living in a small rented apartment of a friend of her brother. Really nothing much happens in this book except her internal angst about trying to find herself. None of the characters are particularly likeable and i just could not get into it. Would not have finished except book club selection. ( )
  maryreinert | Jan 16, 2021 |
It took me awhile to get into Writers and Lovers. I think the amount of characters overwhelmed me. Plus I was reading too slowly and inattentively.

Once I sped up and gave it my attention I found it to be smart, moving and very enjoyable.

My heart went out to Casey and the situation she was in. But I could see that her intelligence would lead her onto a good path. Despite issues with both her mother and father, she learned many skills as well as common sense from them.

This is the type of book that makes me know that going with your gut feeling is often better than depending on conventional wisdom.

Good read.
  Bookish59 | Jan 10, 2021 |
Casey is mourning her mother, stalled on her novel, meandering from lover to lover, indecisive, working a get-by job that barely gets her by. Slowly, then all at once, things begin to change. At last: "There's a particular feeling in your body, when something goes right, after a long time of things going wrong. It feels warm, and sweet, and loose." And it feels joyous, and very satisfying. ( )
  RandyRasa | Jan 7, 2021 |
Loved loved loved it. Prose was crisp and beautiful. Story kept my attention and I loved the protagonist (most of the time), she wasn’t perfect. ( )
  FurbyKirby | Jan 5, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 51 (next | show all)
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Epigraph
Dedication
For my sister, Lisa,
with love and gratitude
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I have a pact with myself not to think about money in the morning.
Quotations
I don't write because I think I have something to say. I write because if I don't, everything feels even worse.
It's a particular kind of pleasure, of intimacy, loving a book with someone.
Marriage is the polar opposite of a fairy tale, my mother said.
When I was visiting her a few years ago she hugged me and said, 'Tomorrow after you leave I will stand here at this window and remember that yesterday you were right here with me.'
     And now she's dead and I have that feeling all the time, no matter where I stand.
He's still leaning against his car and turning only his head in my direction, as if he likes his pose too much to undo it.
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#ReadWithJenna Book Club Pick as Featured on Today Emma Roberts' Belletrist Book Club Pick A New York Times Book Review's Group Text Selection Following the breakout success of her critically acclaimed and award-winning novel Euphoria, Lily King returns with another instant New York Times bestseller: an unforgettable portrait of an artist as a young woman. Blindsided by her mother's sudden death, and wrecked by a recent love affair, Casey Peabody has arrived in Massachusetts in the summer of 1997 without a plan. Her mail consists of wedding invitations and final notices from debt collectors. A former child golf prodigy, she now waits tables in Harvard Square and rents a tiny, moldy room at the side of a garage where she works on the novel she's been writing for six years. At thirty-one, Casey is still clutching onto something nearly all her old friends have let go of: the determination to live a creative life. When she falls for two very different men at the same time, her world fractures even more. Casey's fight to fulfill her creative ambitions and balance the conflicting demands of art and life is challenged in ways that push her to the brink. Writers & Lovers follows Casey--a smart and achingly vulnerable protagonist--in the last days of a long youth, a time when every element of her life comes to a crisis. Written with King's trademark humor, heart, and intelligence, Writers & Lovers is a transfixing novel that explores the terrifying and exhilarating leap between the end of one phase of life and the beginning of another.

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