Praise for Therese Anne Fowler:
"A provocative, absorbing read." People
“Thought-provoking and fast-paced” Good Morning America
"Riveting...Fowler empathetically conjures nuanced characters we won't soon forget, expertly weaves together their stories, and imbues the plot with a sense of inevitability and urgency. In the end, she offers an opportunity for catharsis as well as a heartfelt, hopeful call to action.Traversing topics of love, race, and class, this emotionally complex novel speaks toand may reverberate beyondour troubled times." Kirkus, on A Good Neighborhood (starred review)
“Searing...Fowler skillfully renders her characters and their experiences into an unforgettable, heartbreaking story.” Library Journal (starred review)
"Fowler's fascinating plot is skillfully executed, delving into each character's complexities fully enough that their choices make perfect sense. This page-turner delivers a thoughtful exploration of prejudice, preconceived notions, and what it means to be innocent." Publisher's Weekly
"A rippling story for fans of suspenseful domestic dramas" Booklist
“It’s a timely story about what happens when we fail to consider how our actions affect others and the tragedy that can befall us if we can’t coexist with those whose values are different from our own." Atlanta Journal-Constitution
"Fowler has crafted one of the most precise and timely novels of the year. The daughter of a local businessman starts dating the biracial son of a professor in a leafy North Carolina suburb, boiling toward an inevitable and wrenching conclusion."Newsweek
"Fowler’s novel culminates with injustices that are painfully easy to imagine because they continue to be a part of our contemporary lived experience." The Washington Post
“A readable saga nodding toward a bevy of social issues" Entertainment Weekly
"For fans of slow-burn mysteries that explore the tenuous, fragile nature of neighborhoods think Big Little Lies or Little Fires Everywhere this book is what you’ve been waiting for this year." BookBub
“Therese Anne Fowler has..concocted a feast of a read: compelling, heartbreaking, and inevitable. I finished A Good Neighborhood in a single sitting. Yes, it’s that good.” Jodi Picoult, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Small Great Things and A Spark of Light
“Relentlessly paced, stylishly written, and perfectly timed, Therese Anne Fowler’s latest is a sharp, moving portrait of an American neighborhood on the brink of change. You’ll be thinking about A Good Neighborhood long after you've left it.”Christina Baker Kline, New York Times bestselling author of Orphan Train
"Compelling and captivating, A Good Neighborhood left me speechless yet wanting to discuss. This is a story that will stick with you for a long time." Emily Giffin, #1 New York Times bestselling author of All We Ever Wanted
"A provocative, timely page-turner about the crucial issues of our time. I gulped it down, and the stunning conclusion left me both heartbroken and hopeful.” Meg Waite Clayton, New York Times bestselling author of The Last Train to London
"A gripping modern morality tale...Familiar elements - two families, two young lovers, a legal dispute - frame a story that feels both classic and inevitable. But Fowler makes the book her own with smart dialogue, compelling characters and a communal “we” narrator that implicates us all in the wrenching conclusion." Tara Conklin, New York Times bestselling author of The Last Romantics
"A Good Neighborhood is my favorite kind of novel compelling, complicated, timely, and smart. With great humanity, Therese Anne Fowler imparts a full-hearted, unflinching indictment of a broken system and in so doing tells a story hard to put down and hard to forget." Laurie Frankel, bestselling author of This is How it Always Is
"Nothing short of mesmerizing." Kirkus, on A Well-Behaved Woman (starred review)
"Genius....Fowler's exploration of the way powerful women are simultaneously devalued and rewarded resonates powerfully." Publishers Weekly, on A Well-Behaved Woman (starred review)
In a departure from her best-selling historical fiction (A Well-Behaved Woman), Fowler writes a searing story of a neighborhood in present-day America, shining a spotlight on the effects of class and race as two families collide in a small, gentrifying community. Having made a fortune in the HVAC business, Brad Whitman, who is white, moves his family to a big, brand-new house in Oak Knoll, NC. He should be living the dream, but instead he's soon clashing with his African American neighbor Valerie Alston-Holt when she files a lawsuit against him for damaging the giant oak tree in her yard during construction of his new house. Meanwhile, despite the animosity between their parents and the difference in their skin color, teenagers Juniper Whitman and Xavier Alston-Holt are drawn to each other. They steal moments together at the border of their backyards and begin a tentative romance. As their relationship deepens, however, Juniper's family situation becomes even more complicated, threatening to jeopardize all of their futures. VERDICT Fowler skillfully renders her characters and their experiences into an unforgettable, heartbreaking story. Great for book clubs and fans of Tayari Jones and Jodi Picoult. [See Prepub Alert, 7/1/19.]—Melissa DeWild, Comstock Park, MI
A riveting, potentially redemptive story of modern American suburbia that reads almost like an ancient Greek tragedy.
When the Whitmans, a nouveau riche white family, move into a sprawling, newly built house next door to Valerie Alston-Holt, a black professor of forestry and ecology, and her musically gifted, biracial 18-year-old son, Xavier, in a modest, diverse North Carolina neighborhood of cozy ranch houses on wooded lots, it is clear from the outset things will not end well. The neighborhood itself, which serves as the novel's narrator and chorus, tells us so. The story begins on "a Sunday afternoon in May when our neighborhood is still maintaining its tenuous peace, a loose balance between old and new, us and them," we are informed in the book's opening paragraph. "Later this summer when the funeral takes place, the media will speculate boldly on who's to blame." The exact nature of the tragedy that has been foretold and questions of blame come into focus gradually as a series of events is set inexorably in motion when the Whitmans' cloistered 17-year-old daughter, Juniper, encounters Xavier. The two teenagers tumble into a furtive, pure-hearted romance even as Xavier's mom and Juniper's stepfather, Brad, a slick operator who runs a successful HVAC business and has secrets of his own, lock horns in a legal battle over a dying tree. As the novel builds toward its devastating climax, it nimbly negotiates issues of race and racism, class and gentrification, sex and sexual violence, environmental destruction and other highly charged topics. Fowler (A Well-Behaved Woman, 2018, etc.) empathetically conjures nuanced characters we won't soon forget, expertly weaves together their stories, and imbues the plot with a sense of inevitability and urgency. In the end, she offers an opportunity for catharsis as well as a heartfelt, hopeful call to action.
Traversing topics of love, race, and class, this emotionally complex novel speaks to—and may reverberate beyond—our troubled times.