Saturday, February 25, 2017


On Turpentine LaneOn Turpentine Lane by Elinor Lipman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

In 1999 I stumbled upon The Inn at Lake Devine and chose it to be featured at a Reader's Advisory Workshop where I was speaking. Elinor Lipman turned out to be a 'life author' for me. Her stories are what I call literate chic-lit but they are more than that.

Here's what I wrote in an earlier review on my blog:

She is the Jane Austen of her time. Language, dialogue and sentences are precise and exactly right. And you will want to be friends with all her characters. She deals with what could be uncomfortable topics that are part of our lives in a way that makes them palatable.

THE FIRST LINE: "If I hadn't been naive and recklessly trusting, would I ever have purchased number 10 Turpentine Lane, a chronic headache masquerading as a charming bungalow?"

THE STORY: Faith Frankel has returned to her hometown at the age of thirty-two to work for her private school writing thank you notes to wealthy donors. In the meantime, her fiance has abandoned her and is finding himself on a cross country walk. He's too busy to get in touch with her but posts pictures of himself with the women he is meeting on his trek. Luckily Faith has support from her office mate Nick Franconi. (Can you see where this is going?)

WHAT I THOUGHT: This screwball romantic comedy is funny, poignant, and a little outrageous. If you want a lovely, well-written escape from today's politics, you can't go wrong with Elinor Lipman. Highly recommended.

Title: On Turpentine Lane
Author: Elinor Lipman
Genre: Chic-Lit
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin
No. of Pages: 320
Copyright: February 14, 2017
ISBN-10: 054480824X
ISBN-13: 978-0544808249

Disclaimer: An advanced reading copy (ARC) of this book was provided to me by Houghton Mifflin and Net Galley for an honest review.

ELINOR LIPMAN is the author of ten novels, including The View from Penthouse B and The Inn at Lake Devine; one essay collection, I Can’t Complain; and Tweet Land of Liberty: Irreverent Rhymes from the Political Circus. She lives in Massachusetts and New York City. (from

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