If You Lived Here, You'd Be Home By Nowby Sandra Tsing Loh
Bronwyn and Paul are a couple stranded at a "temporary" stop on their inevitable way to Hollywood glamour--in a house that is so ugly, so frayed, so...brown that it's almost cool. But just as the Bohemian life is wearing painfully thin, their fortunes change, catapulting them out of the world of practical problems and into the world of ethical ones.
If Bronwyn Peters is such a good young liberal, listening to NPR, giving money to good causes and stalwartly maintaining a bohemian lifestyle in the wasteland of Tujunga, a tract-house suburb not far from L.A., how come so many bad things keep happening to her? Once the hip batik-wearing girlfriend of the most successful writing student at San Jose State, Bronwyn is still, six years later (at the onset of the '90s) just "the girlfriend," while writer Paul, whose attempts to sell a screenplay keep bombing, sinks deeper and deeper into a showbiz-induced depression. They're also sinking slowly into debt, but worst of all is Bronwyn's sense that despite Paul's Talent they're really just extras in someone else's movietwo anonymous, black-clad members of "Los Angeles' vast, undocumented hip," with "the crust of disappointment. . .all over them, the wild-eyed, sunburned despair." Yet Paul refuses to share Bronwyn's dream of ditching this city in favor of East Coast academiaeven when her women's studies fellowship is canceled in favor of a new minority studies program ("It's the ethnics against the women!" her advisor whispers). By the time the L.A. riots destroy any chance that Bronwyn and Paul will ever crawl out from under their real estate debt and escape L.A., Bronwyn has realized that she and Paul are simply not destined to win in this worldand that there's not really anything to do about it but get married and live as happily as possible.
If some of Loh's comic references are a bit shopworn (corporate promotional parties, showbiz talk), that doesn't mean they aren't dead-on funny and true.
- Penguin Publishing Group
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- 5.10(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.60(d)
Meet the Author
Sandra Tsing Loh is a writer/performer whose most recent one-person show, the critically acclaimed Aliens in America, was published by Riverhead in paperback this September. Loh has also performed her monologues in the 1996 U.S. Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen, and on NPR radio. She is the winner of a 1995 Pushcart Prize for fiction and a MacDowell Fellowship and her work has appeared in The New York Times, Cosmopolitan, Harper's Bazaar, Los Angeles Times and in Buzz magazine, where she penned "The Valley" column. Her essay collection, Depth Takes a Holiday, was a hardcover bestseller and has already hit the Los Angeles Times paperback bestseller list at #3.
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