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'Jami Attenberg's work is so deeply attuned to humans and our imperfect attempts to love each other ... Attenberg handles it all with an expert touch and a keen sense of what, despite all the sadness and secrets, keeps people connected, striving for moments of beauty and tenderness in a dark world.' Emma Cline, author of The Girls
'An ambitious and utterly delectable novel about families and their secrets that opens up, pleasurably, like a set of nesting dolls.' - Kelly Link, author of Get in Trouble
Victor Tuchman - a power-hungry real estate developer and an all-round bad man - is finally on his deathbed. His daughter Alex feels she can finally unearth the secrets of who he really was and what he did over the course of his life. She travels to New Orleans to be with her family, but mostly to interrogate her tight-lipped mother, Barbra. As Barbra fends off Alex's unrelenting questions, she reflects on her tumultuous married life.
Meanwhile Gary, Alex's brother, is incommunicado, trying to get his movie career off the ground in Los Angeles. And Gary's wife, Twyla, is having a nervous breakdown, buying up all the lipstick in drug stores while bursting into crying fits. As each family member grapples with Victor's history, they must figure out a way to move forward - with one another, for themselves and for the sake of their children.