I’d read Gone With the Wind, thirteen times before I’d reached the age of sixteen. Like the many readers who have fallen in love with Margaret Mitchell’s classic novel over the past 75 years, in my mind the book to be the epitome of a sweeping saga: while our country’s bloody Civil War raged on altering lives and fortunes, Scarlett O’Hara—the book’s beautiful, selfish, prideful tempestuous heroine—stood dead center in a love triangle with a blackguard of a bad boy—Rhett Butler, of course–and the honorable golden boy next door, Ashley Wilkes.
Yes, it was a captivating read.
All books should be so compelling.
I was born and raised (as they say there) in Atlanta, Georgia: home to Ms. Mitchell, and the key location of the novel. There, an obsession with GWTW is not only acceptable, it’s mandated on your birth certificate, drivers’ license, homeowner deed and library card.
Of course, I’m kidding…sort of.
Not that you have to be from Atlanta to love Scarlett. Hundreds of millions of copies of the book have been sold, in 35 languages.
How do you say “Fiddle-dee-dee” in Laotian? Does it matter that it doesn't translate exactly? Not in the least. The universal language is, and always shall be, love, in all ages and stages, from puppy to unrequited.
I’ve since discovered many writers whose stories are just as compelling, and whose heroines are just as flawed. Take Ondine Sprague in Edith Wharton’s Custom of the Country, or Lisbeth Salamandar in Stieg Larsson's Girl with the Dragon Tattoo: both strong women who confound (and intrigue) the men in their lives.
Here's hoping that my heroines — Hannah in True Hollywood Lies, or Lyssa in Secret Lives of Husbands and WIves or Katie in The Baby Planner, or Donna in The Housewife Assassin's Handbook — enthrall my readers, too.
Because frankly, my dears, I do give a damn.
Tomorrow is another day,
In Bookstores Now!
Chosen as one of the "Top 5 Must-Read Spring 2011 Paperbacks" by SheKnows.com
(Simon & Schuster/Gallery Books)
ISBN#: 9781439197127 – Trade Paperback
ISBN# 9781439197134 – BN Nook Edition
ASIN: B0043RSK8U – Kindle Edition
"Brown (Secret Lives of Husbands and Wives) takes baby mania to its illogical, hysterical extreme in this bubbly romp. Thirty-seven-year-old Katie's biological clock is ticking like a time bomb, and she turns her baby obsession into a wildly successful consultant gig planning nurseries for pregnant women too rich, clueless, bedridden, or busy to do the task themselves.
Even grieving widower Seth, who works with Katie's child-shy husband, Alex, on a demanding new business venture, needs Katie's services to help him manage his perplexing new role as a single dad. But what begins as a light foray into Bugaboo country turns into something bigger than a satire of status-obsessed Bay Area yummy mummies as Brown takes a dark look at the fears of parenthood and family, with Katie's heartbreaking longing for a child unveiling a disturbing reality about her marriage and family. Still, the message from the somber realities is one full of hope: love makes a family, commitment keeps it together."