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The Golden State
by Lydia Kiesling




Overview -

NATIONAL BOOK FOUNDATION 5 UNDER 35 PICK. LONGLISTED FOR THE CENTER FOR FICTION'S FIRST NOVEL PRIZE.

Named one of the Best Books of 2018 by NPR, Bookforum and Bustle. One of Entertainment Weekly's 10 Best Debut Novels of 2018. An Amazon Best Book of the Month and named a fall read by Buzzfeed, Nylon, Entertainment Weekly, Elle, Vanity Fair, Vulture, Refinery29 and Mind Body Green

A gorgeous, raw debut novel about a young woman braving the ups and downs of motherhood in a fractured America

In Lydia Kiesling's razor-sharp debut novel, The Golden State, we accompany Daphne, a young mother on the edge of a breakdown, as she flees her sensible but strained life in San Francisco for the high desert of Altavista with her toddler, Honey. Bucking under the weight of being a single parent--her Turkish husband is unable to return to the United States because of a "processing error"--Daphne takes refuge in a mobile home left to her by her grandparents in hopes that the quiet will bring clarity.

But clarity proves elusive. Over the next ten days Daphne is anxious, she behaves a little erratically, she drinks too much. She wanders the town looking for anyone and anything to punctuate the long hours alone with the baby. Among others, she meets Cindy, a neighbor who is active in a secessionist movement, and befriends the elderly Alice, who has traveled to Altavista as she approaches the end of her life. When her relationships with these women culminate in a dangerous standoff, Daphne must reconcile her inner narrative with the reality of a deeply divided world.

Keenly observed, bristling with humor, and set against the beauty of a little-known part of California, The Golden State is about class and cultural breakdowns, and desperate attempts to bridge old and new worlds. But more than anything, it is about motherhood: its voracious worry, frequent tedium, and enthralling, wondrous love.

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More About The Golden State by Lydia Kiesling

 
 
 

Overview

NATIONAL BOOK FOUNDATION 5 UNDER 35 PICK. LONGLISTED FOR THE CENTER FOR FICTION'S FIRST NOVEL PRIZE.

Named one of the Best Books of 2018 by NPR, Bookforum and Bustle. One of Entertainment Weekly's 10 Best Debut Novels of 2018. An Amazon Best Book of the Month and named a fall read by Buzzfeed, Nylon, Entertainment Weekly, Elle, Vanity Fair, Vulture, Refinery29 and Mind Body Green

A gorgeous, raw debut novel about a young woman braving the ups and downs of motherhood in a fractured America

In Lydia Kiesling's razor-sharp debut novel, The Golden State, we accompany Daphne, a young mother on the edge of a breakdown, as she flees her sensible but strained life in San Francisco for the high desert of Altavista with her toddler, Honey. Bucking under the weight of being a single parent--her Turkish husband is unable to return to the United States because of a "processing error"--Daphne takes refuge in a mobile home left to her by her grandparents in hopes that the quiet will bring clarity.

But clarity proves elusive. Over the next ten days Daphne is anxious, she behaves a little erratically, she drinks too much. She wanders the town looking for anyone and anything to punctuate the long hours alone with the baby. Among others, she meets Cindy, a neighbor who is active in a secessionist movement, and befriends the elderly Alice, who has traveled to Altavista as she approaches the end of her life. When her relationships with these women culminate in a dangerous standoff, Daphne must reconcile her inner narrative with the reality of a deeply divided world.

Keenly observed, bristling with humor, and set against the beauty of a little-known part of California, The Golden State is about class and cultural breakdowns, and desperate attempts to bridge old and new worlds. But more than anything, it is about motherhood: its voracious worry, frequent tedium, and enthralling, wondrous love.


 

Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781250238115
  • ISBN-10: 1250238110
  • Publisher: Picador USA
  • Publish Date: September 2019
  • Page Count: 304
  • Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.4 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.55 pounds


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BookPage Reviews

Book Clubs: September 2019

The Golden State by Lydia Kiesling
Lydia Kiesling explores themes of immigration and family in her debut novel, The Golden State. Daphne, whose Turkish husband has been denied entry into the United States, is raising her infant daughter, Honey, alone in San Francisco. Cracking under the pressure of single parenthood and looking to escape her stress-filled life, she decamps with Honey for the California desert. Once there, Daphne drinks more than she should and meets her neighbors—Cindy, who’s a secessionist, and elderly Alice. But then her connections with the pair take a threatening turn. Told over the course of 10 days, this is an unflinching portrait of motherhood and its many challenges. Kiesling is a perceptive, compassionate writer, and she brings a remote part of California to vivid life in this accomplished debut.

Small Animals by Kim Brooks
When Brooks left her 4-year-old son in the car while running a quick errand, the police were alerted and she became embroiled in a protracted legal battle. Brooks recounts her experience in this fascinating mix of memoir and reportage on contemporary parenting.

Virgil Wander by Leif Enger
Suffering from memory loss after a car accident, Virgil tries to reconstruct his past in the tightknit community of Greenstone, Minnesota. Enger’s many fans will savor this bittersweet chronicle of Greenstone and the charming people who call it home.

Heartland by Sarah Smarsh
This powerful memoir recounts Smarsh’s upbringing on a Kansas farm, reflecting on the past and probing the economic and social causes of poverty in America.

Dear America by Jose Antonio Vargas
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Vargas, who is Filipino, learned of his undocumented status at the age of 16, when he tried to get a driver’s license. With a reporter’s instinct for detail, he writes about the challenges of surviving as an outsider in America.

 

BAM Customer Reviews