10 Ten Books I wish I could read for the first time (again)…
In no particular order…
--Story of a Girl by Sara Zarr. How to not to be haunted by something you wish you hadn’t done—really, really stayed with me.
--The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart. Love the kick-assness of Frankie and the subtext of insubordination for the greater good.
--Tales of the City by Armistaud Maupin. A whole series—eight books in all—that are one giant love letter to San Francisco, my hometown and the setting of Love & Haight. The first is my fave…
--Looking for Alaska by John Green. That whole notion of the “Great Perhaps”—brilliant.
--The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides. Set, like my book in the swinging 1970s…and written in first-person plural. The first sentence starts: “On the morning the last Lisbon daughter took her turn at suicide…” How can you not read on?
--Sex and the City (the original) by Candace Bushnell. If you’ve only watched the series on HBO or in endless late-night repeat, you are missing out. The book, a collection of pithy columns first published in the New York Observer, is funnier and sharper than the show. And full disclosure: Candace and I worked together moons ago and she gave me a fantabulous blurb for Love & Haight.
--The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky. “We accept the love we think we deserve.” The first time I read that line….Wow.
--Go Ask Alice by Anonymous. This book came out the year my novel is set—1971. It’s the anonymous diary of a drug user and I remember passing it around in junior high. Who knows if it’s actually true—we read it compulsively.
--Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh. Harriet is fierce and my favorite childhood character. I wanted to be Harriet M. Welch.
--Forever by Judy Blume. So honest about sex—starting on page 89.
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About the Author
It’s 1971, and seventeen-year-old Chloe and her best friend MJ head to San Francisco to ring in the New Year. But Chloe has an ulterior motive—and a secret. She’s pregnant and has devised a plan not to be. In San Francisco’s flower-power heyday, it was (just about) legal to end her pregnancy.
But as soon as the girls cross the Golden Gate, the scheme starts to unravel amid the bellbottoms, love-beads, and bongs. Chloe’s secrets escalate until she betrays everyone she cares about. MJ, who has grave doubts about Chloe’s plan. Her groovy aunt Kiki, who’s offered the girls a place to crash. Her self-absorbed mother meditating back in Phoenix. And maybe, especially, the boy she wishes she’d waited for.
Goodreads / Author Website