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From Barnes & NobleBarnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers
T Cooper, in her self-assured and relentlessly honest debut, explores love, loss, gender, and sex in a group of tight-knit characters, each searching for a way to feel alive and needed.
In this novelistic game of musical chairs, Taylor and her mother, Arlene, have been living together in Providence, Rhode Island. But when the beautiful but inept Taylor decides to cut the umbilical cord and move to Los Angeles, Arlene makes a move as well, even if it's only to the bedroom down the hall. Arlene's brother, Charlie, and his former lover, Isak, cohabit in a New York City apartment. Charlie's other companion is HIV-positive, but despite Charlie's cynical nature, he's quite healthy. Often mistaken for a man, Isak endures years living off her street smarts before leaving Charlie to return to her parents' home in Los Angeles. In turn, Charlie, whose heart wounds easily and heals slowly, agrees to move to Arlene's house in Providence.
As Isak, Taylor, Arlene, and Charlie sort our their loves and hurts, they never anticipate ending up together in the same home in Providence -- content, at least for a moment, to relax. All of the characters in Some of the Parts are fragile, but in the process of toughening up, each of them comes to realize that the actual test of their strength is "making it" as a family. Theirs is a story about leaving home, only to wonder how they ever made it back into the arms of a family that fortuitously created itself. (Fall 2002 Selection