Thorndike Press


  • Xhenet Aliu
  • Offered By:
  • ISBN-10: 1432850822
  • ISBN-13: 9781432850821
  • DDC: Fic
  • Shipping Weight: 1.10 lbs ( .50 kgs)
  • 444 Pages | Hardcover
  • Published/Released April 2018

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A waitress at the Betsy Ross Diner, Elsie hopes her nickel-and-dime tips will add up to a new life. Then she meets Bashkim, a married man who left Albania to chase his dreams and wound up working as a line cook in Waterbury, Connecticut. Seventeen years later, headstrong and independent Luljeta receives a rejection letter from NYU and a suspension from school on the same day. Now she’s stuck in Connecticut with her mother, Elsie — a fate she refuses to accept.


Customer Reviews

“A boldly witty and astute inquiry into the nature-versus-nurture debate, the inheritance of pain, and the dream of transcendence.”

— Booklist (starred)

“Deftly written in a style that is evocative of time and place, this universal story of the search for home is well translated into the blue-collar world of Elsie and Lulu.”

— Library Journal (starred)

“This glimmering debut novel reflects on mother-daughter connections, abandonment and resilience, and dreams that endure despite the odds.”

— starred, Kirkus Reviews