Wednesday, August 20, 2008

A Recommendation

Hey! Jincy Willett has a new book out! I blew off everything yesterday and read the whole shebang. The book is called The Writing Group, and it’s a mystery, about a writing workshop in which one of the participants is a murderer.

Oh my stars, as they say in the old country. I think this might be my favorite book. It’s funny and smart and suspenseful and moving. I was pissed at myself when I finished it, such a greedy guts, reading it all at once. I couldn’t resist, though. Look:

“All the Halloweens in Amy’s memory had been thrilling events, where you ran masked and free through magically unfamiliar streets. Amy couldn’t remember this part she was watching now, the first and probably most important part, when you had no idea why they were wrapping you up in a sheet with jagged eyeholes and leading you into the dark void. Outside Amy’s car window normally overprotective adults giggled at their sobbing, spooked children. The crying ghost had probably glimpsed himself in a mirror, and his mother had said, “It’s just you, silly. You’re scared of your own self!” and couldn’t help laughing when this made him cry even harder. Here was the beginning of a story idea: Why is the kid crying? No. Why is his mother laughing?

It’s been ages since I’ve been in any kind of workshop, unless you count my foisting manuscripts on Stephanie and begging for help, but the group dynamic felt spot-on, and the mystery element is really well done. I’m gushing, I know.

Just read the thing.


Hairline Fracture said...

Noted--it sounds great.

I always think I should try to find a writing group. Until I recall the absolute TORTURE they were for me. But maybe that was because we were in grad school and almost every member had literary pretensions out the wazoo.

Jennifer said...

I really loved the fiction workshops I took in college. But then I had this idea that I'd head up a memoir-writing class for adults 55 and older. Most of the people were great, but after the first class, I got hate mail from, I swear to God, a woman who founded a homeless shelter. I still have no idea what I did to piss her off so much, but it made me off-kilter for rest of the session.

BabelBabe said...

I snagged it at the library three days ago and am planning a quiet ice cream lunch sans children to finish it. I LOVE it. I had forgotten how clever and funny and real her novels are.

Jody said...

I go to a monthly writing critique group. Sometimes I'm afraid that a member might murder me. But so far so good. I'll have to check out this book.

fer said...

Oh! Thank you for this serendipitous discovery! Jincy Willett is the mother of one of my former high school students...I admire him (accomplished musician) AND his brilliant mother. I didn't know she had published a new work. Cheers to a small world!