Normal People Don't Live Like This

Normal People Don't Live Like This

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by Dylan Landis
     
 

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“Wonderful! Leah and Helen are authentic, vulnerable characters, whose intimate truths are exposed at perfect, unexpected moments.”—Elizabeth Strout

At the center of this startling fiction debut is Leah Levinson, a teen at sea in the anonymous ordeals of a middle-class upbringing on the Upper West Side in the 1970s. In ten installments,

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Overview

“Wonderful! Leah and Helen are authentic, vulnerable characters, whose intimate truths are exposed at perfect, unexpected moments.”—Elizabeth Strout

At the center of this startling fiction debut is Leah Levinson, a teen at sea in the anonymous ordeals of a middle-class upbringing on the Upper West Side in the 1970s. In ten installments, written from varying perspectives, we witness her uneasy relationships with faster, looser peers—girls she is drawn to but also alienated by.

No one, though, alienates Leah more than her mother, Helen. Estranged yet intertwined, they struggle within the confines of their personalities, unaware of how similar their paths are. Just when they seem at a lonely impasse, each makes an impulsive change—Leah taking a risky trip abroad, Helen renting a secret room in a welfare hotel. Jolted from their old patterns, the two of them independently glimpse the possibility of a more hopeful life.

Dylan Landis is a gifted portraitist of unforgettable female characters. Normal People Don’t Live Like This is a striking debut.

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Editorial Reviews

More magazine
“The tales in this bravura work are timeless: They could easily belong to our daughters’ generation instead of our own.”
Booklist
“Some delicious writing. . . .Buy this for your literary fiction readers and short story fans.”— Ellen Loughran
Bookforum
“[A] lean, beguiling novel in stories. . . .Elegantly written.”— Eryn Loeb
Vanity Fair
“The characters in Dylan Landis's debut story collection, Normal People Don't Live Like This, are blessedly extraordinary.”— Elissa Schappell
Los Angeles Times
“Watch [Landis] very carefully. Once you can create characters like Leah (or Angeline, Rainey and Helen), there's no stopping you.”— Susan Salter Reynolds
Booklist - Ellen Loughran
“Some delicious writing. . . .Buy this for your literary fiction readers and short story fans.”
Bookforum - Eryn Loeb
“[A] lean, beguiling novel in stories. . . .Elegantly written.”
Vanity Fair - Elissa Schappell
“The characters in Dylan Landis's debut story collection, Normal People Don't Live Like This, are blessedly extraordinary.”
MoreMagazine
“The tales in this bravura work are timeless: They could easily belong to our daughters’ generation instead of our own.”
Los Angeles Times - Susan Salter Reynolds
“Watch [Landis] very carefully. Once you can create characters like Leah (or Angeline, Rainey and Helen), there's no stopping you.”
Ellen Loughran - Booklist
“Some delicious writing. . . .Buy this for your literary fiction readers and short story fans.”
Eryn Loeb - Bookforum
“[A] lean, beguiling novel in stories. . . .Elegantly written.”
Elissa Schappell - Vanity Fair
“The characters in Dylan Landis's debut story collection, Normal People Don't Live Like This, are blessedly extraordinary.”
Susan Salter Reynolds - Los Angeles Times
“Watch [Landis] very carefully. Once you can create characters like Leah (or Angeline, Rainey and Helen), there's no stopping you.”

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780892553822
Publisher:
Persea Books
Publication date:
09/22/2009
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
387 KB

Meet the Author

Dylan Landis has published stories in Bomb, Tin House, Best American Nonrequired Reading, and elsewhere. A former journalist, she has won a Poets&Writers California Voices Award and other honors for her fiction. She lives in Washington, DC.

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Normal People Don't Live Like This 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book. Grips you right from the start and puts you into the life of Leah, a troubled teenager dazzled by the fast and mean girls. It's set in Manhattan's upper west side in the 70s but it could be now. Has garnered amazing reviews (LA TImes). Heard Dylan read in NYC, where she was introduced by Elizabeth Strout, who said the most amazing things about the book. It lives up to the buzz! Highly recommended.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago