An artists’ colony is a false paradise for a frustrated writer in this “witty, knowing, and perceptive” novel from a Pulitzer Prize–winning author (The New Yorker).
The mansion is called Illyria, but for the writers and artists who flock there each summer, it’s a Garden of Eden where every artistic curiosity is explored. Away from family, friends, and ordinary responsibilities, the creative spirit can flower, nurtured by the company of other artistic souls. Janet Belle Smith’s husband doesn’t understand why she can’t write at home—or really, for that matter, why she must write at all—but for Janet, the reason is clear: Only in Illyria can she be herself.
But as the writer mingles with her fellow artists—including a Marxist novelist, a Beat poet, and a wild-man sculptor—she begins to fear that the “real” her isn’t who she expected, and Illyria is not the peaceful kingdom it appears to be. This creative paradise is rotting from the inside out, and if Janet doesn’t move quickly, she’ll be trapped in the rubble when the walls come tumbling down.
From the National Book Award–shortlisted author of Foreign Affairs, this humorous story “goes down pleasantly, like a glass of lemonade” (The New York Times).
This ebook features an illustrated biography of Alison Lurie including rare images from the author’s collection.