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3.5 stars I found this to be an uneven novel Lily King won a bunch of awards for her book Euphoria, which I downloaded a long time ago but never read Now I m not sure that I want to read it Other people have rated the writing of this novel as wonderful, but I m not impressed except with how she described one of the men wooing her he s a successful writer widower father of two who, like so many people, can only see what he doesn t have and what he hasn t achieved as he compares himself to other writers The first 40 to 45 percent of Writers and Lovers is a snoozefest Casey has been working on a novel for six years and is in massive student loan debt because she spent her twenties traveling and not working She spent her eight weeks of a retreat mooning over a guy and not writing Now she s waiting tables to pay her minimum of her bills Her mother died a while back, and she s still processing that Her father is a nightmare While Casey gets along with her brother, he lives across the country Even with these hardships, I didn t love the character, although I did empathize with her anxiety and sleeplessness Thanks to NetGalley for the opportunity to read this book, which RELEASES MARCH 3, 2020.Forreviews, please visit Loved Euphoria and author Lily King has done it again with Writers Lovers We follow Casey, a writer, on a journey to find herself I am 31, and 73,000 in debt I ve moved 11 times, had 17 jobs and several relationships that didn t work out I ve been estranged from my father since 12th grade, and earlier this year my mother died What has been constant and steady in my life is the novel I ve been writing This is been my home, the place I could always retreat to The place I could sometimes even feel powerful The place where I am most myself Full review to come on Instagram Twitter FacebookPinterestWow I am kind of shocked by how much I loved this WRITERS LOVERS is the first book I ve read that truly captures what it s like to be a woman in your late twenties early thirties and not have your life figured out When all your friends are in serious relationships or married, with real desk jobs and houses of their own, and you re still working a dead end job and chasing the dream, while serial dating like you re still in college, it s hard to be taken seriously.But this book, it gets that.Casey is living in New England working a waitressing job she hates while trying to finish up her novel Her mother has just died, she has health problems but no health insurance, her student loans have defaulted and seem virtually insurmountable, and she s stuck dating two guys one a mature adult with two young children and a job with the respect and esteem she craves, and the other is in the same boat as her struggling to make it, still figuring his life out She flip flops between the two, afraid of committing to a course of action that could change her life forever for better or for worse.As an author myself, I ve read a lot of books about other writers and most of them don t get it They either romanticize writing as being this holy grail of careers ha in this carefree bohemian life ha where you meet interesting people all the time and drink champers over Proust ha ha ha , or else demonize it as being a career that attracts crazy people who use it as an exercise to exorcise their demons ha actually, wait this one isaccurate Casey falls in the middle of both camps She hates the pretentiousness of some writers, while also desperately craving that acclaim for herself She stereotypes people based on what they read I do this too LOL , she feels jealousy about others success, and she is afraid to read the works of the people she knows, not just because they might hate her if she doesn t like their work but also because it might be too weirdly, creepily intimate YES.Besides all the wicked observations about writers and readers and pretentious intellectuals, there s also just some really good observations about what it means to be an older young adult who is still trying to grow up while feeling as if they already should have Casey is immature but she s trying not to be The struggles she faces even though this book is set in 1997 are still relevant today, and it touches upon a lot of things that plague women, like fertility, sexism, being taken seriously as a professional, passion, domesticity, anxiety, partner intimacy, and so much .This is the first book I ve read in a long time that I feel really gets me I loved it Thanks to the publisher for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review 4.5 to 5 stars My first 5 stars in 2020 and only five days in Thank you HarperCollins and NetGalley for the advance copy.I absolutely loved this book It is nothing like Euphoria, which I also loved, except maybe the connection to authors and writing If Lily King wants to make upstories about writers and writing, what happens in their every day lives, their families, their grief over loss, I will be first in line for my copy I loved the story of 31 year old Casey Peabody, 70,000 in debt from college, with waitressing being the only job she can hold down while spending the last 6 years writing her first novel Her friends who wanted to become authors gave up on it years ago and are doing adult things now, while Casey is stuck The men she meets are writers, her best friend is a writer, yet none seem as poor or unhappy as Casey Lots of humor in this book despite the sadness, a couple of adorable little boys, and great conversations about books, about words, about the writing process, and emotions I just ate it up. DNF at 20%When he kissed me he smelled like Europethe guy happens to be Spanish so yes, of course he smells like Europe Us Europeans have a very distinctive smellI just wander what this type of pointless description is trying to achieve.Unsurprisingly, I ve come to conclusion that this book is not for me.Not only did I dislike the writing style but I found the story to be both trivial and banal The narrative tries, and fails, to come across as a subversive story that follows the mundane trials experienced by an unpublished female writer yes, we will be reminded in a few not so subtle ways that we are indeed reading of a writer who is a woman, not a man whose personality is the usual blend of pathetic and alienated She is treated badly by everyone around her, and we should feel something for her because she can t seem to get any writing done and she s also been dumped by her sort of lover.She makes a series of self pitying and puerile contemplations regarding her own writing, writing itself, and her ambitions and desires Yet, these observations lacked a distinctive voice, seeming to originate from no person in particular.There were certain scenes that lacked clarity and cohesiveness, I wasn t sure when they started or ended as the narrator was too busy playing her own violin to make any sort of sense I m fine with narratives that rely on introspection but here our narrator s mental meanderings seemed merely superfluous additions that added little to no value to her character or her history.Plus there were phrases such as the following that I really disliked that book made my nethersphere sore whatever that might mean They re the eyes of someone very tired and very sad, and once I see them I feel even sadder and then I see that sadness, that compassion, for the sadness in my eyes, and I see the water rising in them My body aches from my throat to my groin.I want him to slide his fingers into my bathing suit and make all the heaviness and misery go away the one that made me quit this book for once and for all.Reading all of this made me laugh, and I m not sure that was the intended effect behind their inclusion I just found this to be a sloppy and predictable tale of an alienated woman who is unsure of her place in the world This is one of the many recent releases that attempt to provide us with a self aware look into the life of a writerand similarly to Bunny it tries to make fun of writing in general.If you are looking for a thought provoking novel featuring the ups and downs of a creative mind, in this case a photographer, I would recommend Self Portrait with Boy If you want to read of a book narrated by a restlessly detached protagonist maybe you should pick up something by Ottessa Moshfegh. Lily King is an intrepid writer who has taken me to amazing places to the jungle of New Guinea to explore South Pacific tribes in Euphoria and to an upscale New England suburb to explore the emotional complexities of a toxic father daughter relationship in Father of the Rain.In Writers Lovers, she sets her sights lower, focusing on a young unpublished writer named Casey who is at a pivotal moment in time her mother has recently died, her student debts are weighing her down, her writing is stalled, a medical problem has cropped up, and her love life is in a word confusing It is, in effect, a coming of age story, but the person coming of age is not a teenager but a woman of 31 who is biding her time waitressing while she figures things out.I believe the author, through one particular moment with her character, signals what she wishes to achieve Why would you pull kids out of the story You want to push them further in, so they can feel everything the author tried so hard to achieve for them Indeed, Lily King has the literary chops to do that making the reader feel for her character.Two subplots vie for attention The first who will Casey choose or will she choose as a love interest an established, handsome, older novelist who is a widower with two adorable young sons or a younger striver who, like Casey, is just trying to figure things out And, is Casey herself a contender with a debut novel that she s been nurturing along As a reader who loves ambiguity, both answers were evident to me early on Most of Casey s writing tribulations are seen off stage and her abundant talent was relayed to me, but not felt by me The triangle romantic plot and Casey s choice were predictable.Don t get me wrong this is a book that goes down easy, and had me turning pages For many readers, the plot will absolutely resonate But for fans of Lily King, who anticipate something in the realm of Euphoria or Father of the Rain, it s not quite up to par My sincere thanks to Grove Atlantic for an advance reader s copy in exchange for an honest review. I love Lily King In this novel, Casey is a server at a high end restaurant which is so spot on I dreamed about my own experience waiting tables in college Cast is also an aspiring writer with an interesting and heartfelt synopsis centered around a character based on her recently deceased mother She is looking for love and we get to experience the early doubt and witty dialogue of new relationships Her take on other writers, her art, her debt, are just a few of what makes this character grow I will be reading this one again Copy provided by the Publisher and NetGalley I was excited to receive Lily King s new novel, Writers Lovers coming March 2020 from the publisher, and only intended to peek at the first few pages, but immediately found myself as if on the back of a bike going fast not in control and thoroughly engaged I sped through this novel on my day off, and then didn t want it to end It s been the same with all her wonderful novels When we first encounter Casey, the driver of this novel, it is 1997, her mother has recently and unexpectedly died, she s been dumped by her boyfriend, she s up to her eyeballs in student loan debt, trying to write her first novel while waiting tables at a Harvard Social Club restaurant think fancy Oh, and she may have some serious health issues All of this is presented with immense wit, insight, an appropriate measure of pathos, and a dash of anger This is a novel for everyone, but particularly for English Majors I are one King really gets it without too much inside baseball to put off any other readers I laughed out loud at the Milton scholar who said that first person female narratives grated on him The novel is full of witty poking like that I suspect but never assume that Writers Lovers it is at least partially autobiographical, for who knows better how hard it is to write a novel than a novelist Casey is clearly dealing with grief, and King skillfully and beautifully brings us inside Casey s head and heart we feel what she s feeling King is so deft at this, that I d swear my heart rate would go up when reading about Casey s panic attacks And when reading about the frenzied chaos of being a busy waitress, I would feel kindred anxiety for Casey as she tried to cope.Two very different men enter Casey s life and the effect they have is to both complicate it and focus it From the first page King had me fully invested in Casey s story, sad for her loses, happy for her successes, disappointed in her choices sometimes, but always rooting for her. {Read} à Writers & Lovers º Following The Breakout Success Of Her Critically Acclaimed And Award Winning Novel Euphoria, Lily King Returns With An Unforgettable Portrait Of An Artist As A Young WomanBlindsided By Her Mother S Sudden Death, And Wrecked By A Recent Love Affair, Casey Peabody Has Arrived In Massachusetts In The Summer OfWithout A Plan Her Mail Consists Of Wedding Invitations And Final Notices From Debt Collectors A Former Child Golf Prodigy, She Now Waits Tables In Harvard Square And Rents A Tiny, Moldy Room At The Side Of A Garage Where She Works On The Novel She S Been Writing For Six Years At Thirty One, Casey Is Still Clutching Onto Something Nearly All Her Old Friends Have Let Go Of The Determination To Live A Creative Life When She Falls For Two Very Different Men At The Same Time, Her World Fractures Even Casey S Fight To Fulfill Her Creative Ambitions And Balance The Conflicting Demands Of Art And Life Is Challenged In Ways That Push Her To The Brink Writers Lovers Follows Casey A Smart And Achingly Vulnerable Protagonist In The Last Days Of A Long Youth, A Time When Every Element Of Her Life Comes To A Crisis Written With King S Trademark Humor, Heart, And Intelligence, Writers Lovers Is A Transfixing Novel That Explores The Terrifying And Exhilarating Leap Between The End Of One Phase Of Life And The Beginning Of Another I m attracted to novels about writers, and I enjoy the mysterious lure in fiction toward the possibility that some of the book may have autobiographical threads In WRITERS AND LOVERS, Lily King s fifth novel, the story centers on Casey, a 31 year old single woman and waitress living in Boston trying to finish her first novel, a six year project so far It s 1997, and Casey is drowning in debt from school loans Her mother has recently died, and she tries to hide her exhausting grief Romantically, she s a disaster of failed relationships She lives in a damp shed turned efficiency attached to her landlord s tony house An early emotional trauma concerning her father keeps rearing up and weighing her down Casey s mask of irreverence is slipping and her life is unraveling.Despite Casey s ongoing grief, King s story has an even balance of droll wit Scenes at the trendy restaurant, Iris, where Casey works, contain some high octane humor and energy, as the reader sees the backstage drama and antics of the restaurant staff, while the seated guests frequently remain as set pieces, although occasionally come into searing focus King s prose is clean, nuanced, and linguistically knowing In 1997, we still pitted one gender against another in casual conversation these days, we try to equalizefluently , and King captures that era flawlessly, not just by saying it is 1997, but by evoking it The author uses language lightly, but with poignancy.There are many passages about grief, especially, that stirred me Here is one, demonstrating Casey s loss with relation to the novel she has been writing for these past six years I ve lost access to a world where my mother is a little girl reading in a window or twirling in fast circles on the street, her braids raised high off her back Outside of that novel she is dead There seems to be no end to the procession of things that make my mother feeldead My primary complaint is the cinematic ending, which I don t think was necessary or better than other choices that King could have made For me, a little ambiguity goes a long way, vs a Hollywood ending Is this how King s life moved forward Probably not so much Did the editors or publishers push for this It s a rhetorical question, of course It could have even cheapened the novel, but fortunately for King, her head is mostly above the fray, and I still found the book an enjoyable feast of food, words, and lovers.Thank you to the publishers of Grove Atlantic for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review.