Writers & Lovers

By Lily King,

Book cover of Writers & Lovers

Book description

#ReadWithJenna Book Club Pick as Featured on Today
Emma Roberts Belletrist Book Club Pick
A New York Times Book Review’s Group Text Selection

"I loved this book not just from the first chapter or the first page but from the first paragraph... The voice is just so honest and riveting…

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Why read it?

9 authors picked Writers & Lovers as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

My mom suggested this book to me because she thought I’d identify with the way this writer explains how she thinks about her writing.

The story includes a romantic dilemma, but I appreciated that it was not the main focus. It's simply a normal part of her complicated life. Casey is a flawed character I found it easy to root for. I look forward to reading other novels by this author.

I tore through this book in a couple of days after it was recommended by another writer friend, Angie McCullogh.

Never before have I read such a mirror reflection of this Venn diagram of my own experiences in writing, loving, and waitressing. Lili King does a beautiful job of bringing us straight into the abyss of the main character’s brain, a wildly mournful, imperfect, and funny place. So much humor and heart!

In a way I wish I could wipe it from my mind so that I could have the juicy joy of discovering it all again.

I made bad…

Lily King’s Writers & Lovers is set in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1997, where my own novel takes place a century earlier. It’s a fictional coming-of-age story of a young woman who tries to write her way into adulthood.

Casey Peabody works as a waitress in Harvard Square, spends time with her aspiring writer friends, walks along the Charles River, and sits for hours at her desk trying to write, all of which I did in those same places at her same age and often with the same sense of longing—and which, incidentally, Victoria Swann does, too, albeit while wearing a…

From Virginia's list on a woman writer finding her own voice.

At first, the protagonist, Casey Peabody, might seem uncomfortably familiar to a lot of us: a 30-something struggling to make it in a tough field (she’s a writer) while being close to broke and dating all the wrong people.

One of those people, a divorced dad named Oscar, offers her a ready-made life she could slot right into: a beautiful home, an enviable wine cellar, a healthy bank account, and two kids who could use a mother figure.

Watching Casey realize that life isn’t what she wants after all—and then trying to figure out what she does want, and how…

In Writers and Lovers, set in Cambridge and Boston, Casey Peabody works a kind of lowly job while holding high aspirations—with dreams of becoming a writer.

But her waitress job leaves her exhausted and uninspired to finish her novel. She is grieving the recent loss of her mother, which contributes to sleepless nights and questionable decisions.

She also dreams of recapturing the passion she felt with a lover at a writer’s colony which steers her toward an older, famous writer as a lover. But his success and her brush with the author dream at the writer’s residency only serve…

From John's list on mixing humor with serious topics.

In writing classes, they chastised us!

You aren’t supposed to write about wanting to grow up to be a writer! They told us, That’s not interesting to your readers. You have to write about something else, write about something that actually happens.

But for those of us who’ve wanted to write since we were young, that is our idea of an exciting story. 

And in Writers & Lovers, the heroine Casey at age 30, is still working so hard to grow up, and anguishing over if she can really become a writer, and find her place in the world.…

There’s nothing I don’t love about this novel: its Cambridge, Massachusetts setting; pitch-perfect descriptions of restaurant work; love triangle.

It’s 1997, and Casey Peabody wants to be a writer. “You know,” a man says after asking how her novel is going, “I just find it extraordinary that you think you have something to say.”

Throughout this gorgeous novel about art, commerce, love, and grief, Casey must hold fast to that truth—that she does have something to say—despite the world’s best efforts at snuffing it out.

A quietly revolutionary portrait of a woman on the brink, Writers and Lovers shows us…

From Daisy's list on the pain of growing up.

This book really spoke to me as a writer, maneuvering my way through the challenging and sometimes difficult writer's life. I loved the protagonist Casey who was struggling with grief, her love life, and most importantly, her writing/creative life. It made me laugh and cry, the perfect combination. Lily King is a wonderful writer and in Casey, created a real protagonist, with honest emotion, touching, funny, and sad. All the emotions rolled together.

If you’d told me it was possible, I wouldn’t have believed you—Lily King’s written a novel where the love story you care most about is the one between a writer and her unpublished novel. If you’re a writer, you should read this. If you’ve ever loved a thing past all logic and reason, if you stayed up past midnight to get in a few more minutes or a few more hours plugging away at it—if you have a passion—you should read this.

If you love stunning sentences and paragraphs that leave you staring into space, mesmerized, read it.

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