From the beloved New York Times bestselling author of Hypocrite in a Pouffy White Dress comes a hilarious, timely, and big-hearted novel about rebuilding life in the face of disaster.
Forty-five-year-old Donna Koczynski is an ex-punk rocker, a recovering alcoholic, and the mother of two teenagers whose suburban existence detonates when she comes home early from a sales conference in Las Vegas to the surprise of a lifetime. As her world implodes, she sets off on an epic road trip to reclaim everything she believes she's sacrificed since her wild youth: Great friendship, passionate love, and her art. But as she careens across the U.S. from Detroit to New York to Memphis to Nashville, nothing turns out as she imagines. Ultimately, she finds herself resurrected on the other side of the globe, on a remote island embroiled in a crisis far bigger than her own.
Irresistibly funny, whip-smart, and surprisingly moving, Donna Has Left the Building spins an unforgettable tale about what it means to be brave -- and to truly love -- in a tumultuous world.
A recovering alcoholic flees her suburban life for a road trip in this witty romp from Gilman (Hypocrite in a Pouffy White Dress). Donna Koczynski, five years sober and still struggling against her craving for a drink, has been selling kitchenware in Troy, Mich., for more than a decade a far cry from her dreams of forming a punk band. When Donna arrives home early from a disappointing work conference, Donna discovers her dentist husband with a dominatrix. She immediately packs up the family Subaru, buys a guitar, and makes her way from Michigan to New York on a trip filled with many stalls and mishaps, including an ill-advised trip to a former boyfriend in Nashville. When Donna feels there is no way things could get worse, she gets an emergency phone call that her college-age daughter has fallen ill while traveling in Greece. Donna flies over and, after the two reunite, finds kindness and generosity in a country ravaged by an economic crisis and realizes her problems pale in comparison. Donna is reliably irreverent ("I'm an alcoholic. A founding member of the Margarita Mafia, as a bunch of us on the PTA at my daughter's middle school once christened ourselves") and her travels follow a moving evolution to renewed confidence as she comes to terms with mistakes and regrets. Fans of Jonathan Tropper will love this.