To briefly describe this debut novel, consider the intriguing question it poses: What happens when an empty nest fills up again?
And, as a result, its received glorious early praise:
“Moore finds a crisp narrative in the morass of an overpacked household, and she keeps the proceedings moving with an assurance and outlook reminiscent of Laurie Colwin, evoking emotional universals with the simplest of observations, as in ‘the peace you feel when you are awake in a house where children are sleeping.’” –Publishers Weekly
“Featuring sharp dialogue and witty, easily recognizable characters, Moore’s debut takes an engaging, often humorous look at a family’s struggle to cope with the passage of time and shifting family dynamics. It is a clear reminder of the changing yet changeless nature of families and the individuals who inhabit them.” – Booklist
“What an intoxicating read! Meg Mitchell Moore takes on the age-old topic of parents and children and their children with a fresh perspective, a canny understanding of human emotion, and the absolute best dialogue I have ever read. Both charming and deeply meaningful, this is one book you must not miss.” – New York Times bestselling author Elin Hilderbrand
The Divining Wand has scheduled a presentation/review of The Arrivals for Monday, May 23, 2011 but let’s meet the author now through her “official” bio:
Meg Mitchell Moore worked for several years as a journalist. Her work has been published in Yankee, Continental, Women’s Health, Advertising Age and many other business and consumer magazines. She received a B.A. from Providence College and a master’s degree in English Literature from New York University. The Arrivals is her first novel. Her second novel will be published by Reagan Arthur Books in 2012. Meg lives in Newburyport, Massachusetts, with her husband, their three children and a beloved border collie.
A second novel to be published next year? It’s definitely time to get to know Meg, upclose and personal:
Q: How would you describe your life in 8 words?
A: Busy, more laundry than time, caffeinated, productive, LUCKY.
Q: What is your motto or maxim?
A: It’s never too late.
Q: How would you describe perfect happiness?
A: Three happy healthy little girls sleeping after a day at the beach, bottle of wine with my husband.
Q: What’s your greatest fear?
A: Failing as a parent.
Q: If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you choose to be?
A: Top of a ski slope.
Q: Which living person do you most admire?
A: Single parents the world over.
Q: What are your most overused words or phrases?
A: Well, you know, hurry up.
Q: If you could acquire any talent, what would it be?
A: A natural and flawless sense of direction.
Q: What is your greatest achievement?
A: Raising three children with impeccable grammar. Also, just raising three children—not done yet, but so far so good.
Q: What’s your greatest flaw?
Q: What’s your best quality?
Q: What do you regret most?
A: Not learning a bunch of foreign languages when my mind was a sponge. Now my mind is definitely not a sponge.
Q: If you could be any person or thing, who or what would it be?
A: My border collie running after a tennis ball on the beach—that’s pure joy.
Q: What trait is most noticeable about you?
Q; Who is your favorite fictional hero?
A: Jackson Brodie.
Q: Who is your favorite fictional villain?
A: Angela Argo in Blue Angel
Q: If you could meet any athlete, who would it be and what would you say to him or her?
A: Coach Taylor from Friday Night Lights. I know! He’s not real! But I want him to be.
Q: What is your biggest pet peeve?
A: Laziness. Or bullying. Lazy bullies are the worst.
Q: What is your favorite occupation, when you’re not writing?
A: Reading, running.
Q: What’s your fantasy profession?
A: I’m pretty happy with this one. But if I had to pick another: owner of a bookstore/coffee shop. On the water. In New Zealand.
Q: What 3 personal qualities are most important to you?
A: Honesty, sense of humor, empathy.
Q: If you could eat only one thing for the rest of your days, what would it be?
A: The shrimp, avocado and mango salad at Agave, a Mexican restaurant in my town.
Q: What are your 5 favorite songs?
A: Different for Girls, Joe Jackson
The Crane Wife 3, The Decemberists
Fly Me to the Moon, Frank Sinatra
Orbital, Josh Ritter
Kick Drum Heart, The Avett Brothers
Q: What are your 5 favorite books of all time?
A: Case Histories, by Kate Atkinson
To the Lighthouse, by Virginia Woolf
The Emperor’s Children, by Claire Messud
Hateship, Frienship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage, by Alice Munro
Olive Kitteride, Elizabeth Strout
Book Giveaway: The Divining Wand is giving away one copy of The First Husband by Laura Dave in a random drawing of comments left only on this specific post, Laura Dave and The First Husband. Comments left on other posts during the week will not be eligible. The deadline is tonight at 7:00 p.m. EDT with the winners to be announced here in tomorrow’s post. If you enter, please return tomorrow to see if you’re a winner.