Media Center: ‘Arsonist’ by Sue Miller
WHO: Sue Miller
WHAT: THE ARSONIST, a novel
WHEN: Published by Knopf June 24, 2014
WHERE: Set in a small town in New Hampshire.
WHY: “Suspenseful and romantic.
“With her trademark elegant prose and masterful command of subtle psychological nuance, Sue Miller explores the tensions between the summer people and the locals in a small New Hampshire town.
“Frankie Rowley, after years spent doing relief work abroad, has returned to her parents’ summer home, unsure of whether she will ever go back to East Africa, feeling depleted by that region’s seemingly endless suffering. But the reassuring comfort of the small town she has been coming to since she was a girl is shattered by a series of fires set by an arsonist who has targeted the rambling summer homes of the wealthy. Frankie falls into an unexpected and passionate love affair with the local newspaper editor while also becoming privy to her parents’ difficulties, with her mother seeming to resent her husband’s decline into Alzheimer’s, especially since she no longer loves him. The town, awash in fear of the unknown arsonist, splits into factions aligned along class divisions.
“Miller delicately parses the value of commitment and community, the risky nature of relationships, and the yearning for meaningful work.” —Joanne Wilkinson, BOOKLIST
Miller, a pro at explicating family relationships as well as the fragile underpinnings of mature romance, brilliantly draws parallels between Frankie’s world in Africa and her life in New hampshire, and explores how her characters define what ‘home’ means to them and the lengths they will go to protect it.” —PUBLISHERS WEEKLY
“She captures all the complicated nuances of a family in crisis.”
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Publicist for this title: Erinn Hartman | 212-572-2345 | firstname.lastname@example.org