(Portobello Books 2007)
Remedy is a satirical variation on the theme of the American in Paris. A modern-day, upside-down fairy tale, it recounts the amorous adventures and philosophical musings of Remedy O’Riley de Valdez, a young and rather eccentric American working for an on-line fashion site. Faithful to her name, she looks for remedies of all sorts and in all directions, from the columns of a woman’s magazine, to Catholicism, feng shui, belly dancing, diverse cultures and creeds, and men and relationships. Remedy’s ostensible mission is to meet her prince, yet she cannot help reinventing the world around her and this determination to turn life’s contradictions into more palatable paradoxes reveals her deeper purpose. Meditating daily on the lives of the saints, Remedy believes that spiritual enlightenment and romantic fulfillment might just be around the corner…
Remedy has been published by Feltrinelli Editore in Italian under the title Per Tutti i Santi . Rights were acquired by AST Publishers in Moscow. Option rights for a film adaptation have been acquired by Screen Siren Pictures.
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The Baby of Belleville
(Portobello Books 2010)
Every new mother has a story to tell. This is Jane de la Rochefoucault’s story and it contains all the familiar landmarks of feeding, teething, toddling and measuring stuff in and out of Tupperware. But Jane, an American expat in Paris, also faces more unusual challenges. One evening, a knock on the door brings some unexpected visitors: three kung fu experts bearing gifts for the baby. When this trio go missing (along with some stolen cars) Jane and her aristocrat husband Charles suddenly find themselves being interrogated by the police who seem to suspect the kung fu-ers have links to the mysterious underground organization Muslims-Without-Borders and that Jane’s mother-in-law may have a hand in the whole thing too…
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(Editions de la Différence, September 2008)
Upon the advice of an overbooked Native American shaman in New York, Patsy Boone, a French literature major at Brown University, sets off for Paris to seek the help of a celebrated French shaman named M. Nez-Percé to help her overcome amenorrhea. During this rather unorthodox treatment she retraces with humor and marvel the history of America’s great plains and the violent conflicts between Native Americans and settlers, while musing on her daily life in Paris amongst Parisians, her disputes with her gouty concierge, and her passion for tap dancing.
First novel written directly in French.
The Lost and Found and Other Stories
(New York University Press, 1994)
Winner of the Elmer Holmes Bobst Award for Emerging Writers, this collection of tales is, as its title suggests, a sort of “lost and found” peopled with odd, displaced characters. The stories explore the lives of immigrants from Turkey, Algeria, Egypt and Chile; many live in Paris’ less salubrious quarters, others in the suburban homes of America’s wealthy, and some in monasteries of Latin America, but what all these characters share is the struggle to transcend the limitations of their exile. At turns humorous, sly and sinister, the stories of this collection take the reader into unfamiliar terrain where the miraculous is always possible.
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