REESE'S BOOK CLUB PICK
INSTANT #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
THE PAPER PALACE IS:
“Filled with secrets, love, lies and a summer beach house. What more could you ask?”—Parade
“A deeply emotional love story…the unraveling of secrets, lies and a very complex love triangle.” —Reese Witherspoon (Reese’s Book Club July ’21 Pick)
"Nail-biting." —Town & Country
“A magnificent page-turner.” —Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney, New York Times bestselling author
"Beguiling."—Vogue, The Best Books to Read This Summer
A story of summer, secrets, love, and lies: in the course of a singular day on Cape Cod, one woman must make a life-changing decision that has been brewing for decades.
“This house, this place, knows all my secrets.”
It is a perfect July morning, and Elle, a fifty-year-old happily married mother of three, awakens at “The Paper Palace”—the family summer place which she has visited every summer of her life. But this morning is different: last night Elle and her oldest friend Jonas crept out the back door into the darkness and had sex with each other for the first time, all while their spouses chatted away inside. Now, over the next twenty-four hours, Elle will have to decide between the life she has made with her genuinely beloved husband, Peter, and the life she always imagined she would have had with her childhood love, Jonas, if a tragic event hadn’t forever changed the course of their lives. As Heller colors in the experiences that have led Elle to this day, we arrive at her ultimate decision with all its complexity. Tender yet devastating, The Paper Palace considers the tensions between desire and dignity, the legacies of abuse, and the crimes and misdemeanors of families.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Miranda Cowley Heller’s first novel plunges readers into a dizzying swirl of WASPy family drama. The story is told through the eyes of Eleanor, who has returned with her kids and husband to the clan’s rustic East Coast retreat. As the summer unfolds, Eleanor and her imperious mother are forced to grapple with long-buried ghosts, including the long shadow of past abuse. A sprawling and engrossing read, the narrative jumps from past to present, between New York, London, and the shore, as generations are rocked by divorces and betrayals, replenished by new marriages and fresh romances. Heller’s descriptions—of everything from rocky, wild beaches to the lingering impact of physical cruelty—are elegant and visceral. Like the women who animate its pages, The Paper Palace is a powerhouse.
The Paper Palace
The book does what all good books do; take you to a place as real & engrossing as life. Excellent first novel, I look forward to the next one.
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This book reminds me of a Pat Conroy (who is one of my favorite authors) novel but without the “southern-ness”. It’s got wit, love, sex, cancer, secrets, tragedy, assault, perversion, food and alcohol. I couldn’t put it down.
Love this book!
Sweet, heart wrenching tale that’s beautifully written. I couldn’t put this book down!