Inheriting Edith

Inheriting Edith

by Zoe Fishman

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Overview

Inheriting Edith by Zoe Fishman

A poignant breakout novel, for fans of J. Courtney Sullivan and Elin Hilderbrand, about a single mother who inherits a beautiful beach house with a caveat—she must take care of the ornery elderly woman who lives in it.

For years, Maggie Sheets has been an invisible hand in the glittering homes of wealthy New York City clients, scrubbing, dusting, mopping, and doing all she can to keep her head above water as a single mother. Everything changes when a former employer dies leaving Maggie a staggering inheritance. A house in Sag Harbor. The catch? It comes with an inhabitant: The deceased’s eighty-two-year old mother Edith.

Edith has Alzheimer’s—or so the doctors tell her—but she remembers exactly how her daughter Liza could light up a room, or bring dark clouds in her wake. And now Liza’s gone, by her own hand, and Edith has been left—like a chaise or strand of pearls—to a poorly dressed young woman with a toddler in tow.

Maggie and Edith are both certain this arrangement will be an utter disaster. But as summer days wane, a tenuous bond forms, and Edith, who feels the urgency of her diagnosis, shares a secret that she’s held close for five decades, launching Maggie on a mission that might just lead them each to what they are looking for.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062378743
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 10/18/2016
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 186,283
Product dimensions: 5.31(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.72(d)

About the Author

Zoe Fishman is the author of Driving Lessons, Saving Ruth, and Balancing Acts. Her books have been translated into German, Italian, Dutch and Polish. She’s the recipient of many awards, including Target’s Breakout and Emerging Author Picks, a New York Post Pick, and has been featured on NBC’s “Atlanta & Co.” as well as in Publishers Weekly and The Huffington Post. She is currently at work on her next novel, as well as teaching writing at The Callanwolde Fine Arts Center. Zoe lives in Atlanta with her husband and two sons.

Customer Reviews

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Inheriting Edith: A Novel 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
Donna_Fasano More than 1 year ago
The idea of inheriting a beautiful beach house really appeals to me! I loved the characters Zoe Fishman created in her book, Inheriting Edith. I can easily imagine my luck being much like Maggie’s… inheriting the house means inheriting a cantankerous elderly woman along with it. I fell in love with three-year-old Lucy. Kids speak their minds and always add to the fun of any novel. There was so much going on in this story, twists and turns I never saw coming. So entertaining! I also love the fact that the author left some of the plot threads open. Will we see a sequel? I certainly hope so.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Vert good book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Story line good. Abrupt ending in my opinion. Could have done without the use of the f word, really ineffective with no point. I don't know many 82 yr old women who use the word... First book to read by this author, will try one more to see how it goes.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
lasenora More than 1 year ago
This book was very good. It went to show that all ages could be friends and help one another thru some very tough times. It also shed a light on Alzheimer Disease and what some one goes thru in caring for some one who has it. I would recommend it to anyone.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Life can be messy and is full of challenges. Fishman's characters are realistic as they grapple with the difficulties that life is throwing their way. I enjoyed this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was such a good story! I could not put it down. Hope there is a sequel to find out what happens with Maggie, Sam and Edith.
PatPaints More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this book. It was light reading after a Jodi Picoult book, and just what I needed. A complex situation of different generations at turning points in their lives, altered by one person's will. Interesting dilemma for all involved.
Two2dogs More than 1 year ago
I really loved this book, my sister also deals with bipolar & depression so I could relate to Edith, Liza & Maggie, the more we understand the better we can deal with mental illness.
Twink More than 1 year ago
3.5 Inheriting Edith is Zoe Fishman's latest book. Maggie is a single mom who has been working as a house cleaner. One of her clients is a well known author, who treats her well. But when Liza kills herself, Maggie is stunned to find out that she has been left a house in Sag Harbor - complete with the author's eighty year old mother Edith - who has Alzheimer's. This reader was immediately engaged with Fishman's characters. I think each reader will have a favorite character, based on their stage of life. Maggie is a pull no punches woman, struggling to do her best by her little daughter, who has a voice in the story as well. (Some of her dialogue is a bit advanced for the age of the child, but out of the mouth of babes...) Edith is the character who spoke to me the most. Her struggle with memory, everyday living and putting the past right struck close to home for me. I thought Fishman did a great job portraying the everyday issues that come with Alzheimer's - from both Edith and Maggie's viewpoint. I did find Edith's friend Lillian a bit overdrawn and over the top. There aren't a lot of surprises in Inheriting Edith - this type of story has been written before. But Fishman's premise was unique and I found her exploration of motherhood, friendship, grief, aging, illness, self discovery and yes, love, to be thoughtful. I think book clubs would enjoy this novel. If you're in the mood for a heart string tugging tale, consider Inheriting Edith.
SheTreadsSoftly More than 1 year ago
Inheriting Edith by Zoe Fishman is a highly recommended endearing story. Maggie Sheets is surprised to learn that she has inherited a house in Sag Habor, NY from her friend, author Liza Brennan, especially since the two hadn't been in touch for the last four years. Liza committed suicide, so she must have had a plan in mind before ending her own life. As a single mother to two-year-old Lucy, the house along with a financial inheritance, is a blessing. She can quit cleaning houses for a living and concentrate on raising her daughter. There is one catch, however. Along with the house comes Liza’s 82-year-old mother, Edith. Edith didn't like Maggie when they meet years earlier and time hasn't likely improved her opinion. Edith is also in the early stages of Alzheimer’s. If Maggie accepts the bequest, she is going to have to deal with the increasing symptoms of Edith's deteriorating condition while trying to raise her daughter. Why did Liza choose her for this position? It soon becomes clear that Maggie has her hands full with her toddler and Edith. "Edith, you're in trouble. I'm here because, for God knows what reason, Liza wanted me to take care of you. It was her wish. I'm here to carry it out, come hell or high water." "Well, it's not like you're not being paid handsomely for it," Edith retorted. "A house, a pile of money, a car - I'd say you won the damn lottery." "If this is winning the lottery, I'm selling my ticket back. You, Edith, are no prize." The unusual situation results in Maggie and Edith confronting both choices and the resulting consequences in their lives. It also seems that Liza may have known what she was doing when she chose Maggie, however obliquely, for the task of caring for Edith. With a lot of help from Edith's long-time friend, Esther, the two take a prickly start and manage to forge a shaky relationship that opens them up to sharing. Telling the story through Maggie and Edith, Fishman manages to take a rather improbable situation and make it seem plausible. The novel is a fairly quick and easy book to read, and while both Alzheimer's and depression play important roles in the novel, they are not portrayed in depth or as gravely serious as they are in other novels - or in real life. It is the relationship between the characters that becomes the focus here, which Fishman develops with care and understanding. Inheriting Edith is an endearing, heartwarming story about bonds formed between people from different backgrounds once they realize the similarities of their experiences and set aside differences to work together. There were two drawbacks in Inheriting Edith for me. One was Lucy, whose constantly demanding chatter and temper tantrums became a tad bit annoying. It did highlight Maggie's exhaustion dealing with both a two-year-old and an eighty-two-year-old. Perhaps I'm becoming an old curmudgeon; nevertheless, I think I could have understood the gest of Maggie's situation with a little less toddler prattle. The second was the potential love interest for Maggie who added nothing and could have just been left out of the book. Disclosure: I received an advanced reading copy of this book from Harper Collins.
Honolulubelle More than 1 year ago
Favorite Quotes: It was hard, this aging thing, especially since her body had once been as limber as a rubber band. She had been a dancer, when she was young; her body her instrument. Now it felt like an old car, with a faulty transmission. Maggie's mother had been depressed; Maggie knew the drill. She, too, would disappear into the depths of her bed for a week or two, leaving her and her father to fend for themselves. 'Don't worry about your mother, she's on her period,' her father used to offer as explanation. For the longest time, until Maggie had started menstruating herself, she thought a period was a concrete object. Something her mother literally sat on. If this is winning the lottery, I'm selling my ticket back. You, Edith, are no prize. There's youth and then there are idiots like these... Look at those women, all their bits hanging out. There's no mystery anymore. My Review: Inheriting Edith was a beautifully written and well-balanced book that covered several heavy and relevant topics with a deft and sensitive hand. Despite the burden of the potentially maudlin subject matter, the narrative provided lively hits of humor and delightful insights and uncanny observations. The writing was stellar, alternating between amusing and heart-squeezing emotive. The characters were vividly drawn, endearingly flawed, and smartly written. They were also realistically selfish, rueful, and one hundred percent knowable. I was quickly drawn into their story as if I were a fellow conspirator to their creative process. The effect they ultimately had on each other stung my eyes and constricted my throat. Ms. Fishman's narrative superbly brought to life the distressing process of the awareness of losing one's memory to Alzheimer's with all the self-doubt, anxiety, uncertainty, vulnerability, and regrets that would accompany that dreaded diagnosis, as well as the warring fears and the desire to grab on to the last chance of rectifying past mistakes and alleviate some of those life-long regrets while there was still time. And all of that was smoothly woven into an entertaining and engaging story with unexpected twists and revelations. Zoe Fishman is highly skilled, sly, and crafty. She is also my new favorite.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
So much to say abt this book. Does it have to be a stand-alone?!! Just read it!
3593918 More than 1 year ago
Good story line but then it fizzles out somewhere in the middle. and the daughter in the book is 2 years old but her actions & words are those of an older child which I found confusing.