Modern Lovers (Large Print / Paperback)

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Elizabeth and Andrew live in the cozy Ditmas Park neighborhood of Brooklyn, and they have a son Harry. Nearby, their college friend Zoe lives with her wife Jane and their daughter Ruby. Elizabeth, Andrew, and Zoe were in the band Kitty's Mustache in college with Lydia, a Janis Joplinesque singer who had success with their one hit single. And in rock star fashion, she died young of a drug overdose.

Modern Lovers alternates narrators in varying chapters and follows the characters as the two couples have midlife and marriage issues while the two children have teenage issues: young love (with each other, of course), questions about the future and changing relationships with their parents. Straub presents all of the angst in a realistic but often humorous way. Of particular note is Andrew's attempts at finding himself by joining a yoga/cult group around the corner. Are they just free spirits, or is something sketchy going on with the charismatic and skantily-clad leader Dave? Straub gives us a refreshing take on the family tale--certainly a modern version of one.

— Cynthia

June 2016 Indie Next List

“Set in trendy Brooklyn, Straub's latest novel follows the lives of former bandmates Zoe, Elizabeth, and Andrew and their teenage children, Ruby and Harry. When Ruby and Harry begin a relationship, their parents are forced to face and reveal long-buried tensions and secrets. Straub's spot-on depictions of middle-age suburban life and teenage angst are alternatively searing and hilarious. This book is the ultimate literary beach read!”
— Angela Spring (E), Politics & Prose Books and Coffee Shop, Washington, DC


“It’s ‘Friends’ meets ‘Almost Famous’ meets the beach read you’ll be recommending all summer.” –TheSkimm

From the author of the New York Times bestseller The Vacationers, a smart, highly entertaining novel about a tight-knit group of friends from college— and what it means to finally grow up, well after adulthood has set in. 

Friends and former college bandmates Elizabeth and Andrew and Zoe have watched one another marry, buy real estate, and start businesses and families, all while trying to hold on to the identities of their youth. But nothing ages them like having to suddenly pass the torch (of sexuality, independence, and the ineffable alchemy of cool) to their own offspring.

Back in the band's heyday, Elizabeth put on a snarl over her Midwestern smile, Andrew let his unwashed hair grow past his chin, and Zoe was the lesbian all the straight women wanted to sleep with. Now nearing fifty, they all live within shouting distance in the same neighborhood deep in gentrified Brooklyn, and the trappings of the adult world seem to have arrived with ease. But the summer that their children reach maturity (and start sleeping together), the fabric of the adult lives suddenly begins to unravel, and the secrets and revelations that are finally let loose—about themselves, and about the famous fourth band member who soared and fell without them—can never be reclaimed.

Straub packs wisdom and insight and humor together in a satisfying book about neighbors and nosiness, ambition and pleasure, the excitement of youth, the shock of middle age, and the fact that our passions—be they food, or friendship, or music—never go away, they just evolve and grow along with us.

About the Author

Emma Straub is the New York Times‒bestselling author of Modern Lovers, The VacationersLaura Lamont's Life in Pictures, and the short story collection Other People We Married. Straub's work has been published in fifteen countries. She and her husband co-own Books Are Magic, an independent bookstore in Brooklyn.

Product Details
ISBN: 9780735208162
ISBN-10: 0735208166
Large Print: Yes
Publisher: Random House Large Print
Publication Date: May 31st, 2016
Pages: 512
Language: English