cover image The Little Clan

The Little Clan

Iris Martin Cohen. Park Row, $26.99 (320p) ISBN 978-0-7783-1282-6

Cohen’s charming debut sparkles with humor, heart, and an irresistibly irreverent love of books and bibliophiles. Ava Gallanter—young, unaware of her own attractiveness, and clinging to the outdated etiquette, clothing, and traditions of her favorite novels—works as a librarian at an old-fashioned Manhattan social club, The Lazarus Club, that caters to an aging clientele. The setting should be ideal for an aspiring author, but Ava can’t seem to set pen to paper. When her beautiful, impulsive, and chaotically magnetic best friend, Stephanie, bursts back into her life, Ava trades her comfortable but stagnant solitude for a chance to build the bustling literary salon she’s always dreamed of running. Unfortunately, their visions don’t align. Stephanie drags Ava into a Gatsbyesque series of extravagant parties masquerading as book readings, leaving a trail of destruction—both physical and emotional—in their wake. Plunged into credit card debt, with both her employment and housing threatened, Ava begins to question everything she has always believed about herself, including her literary ambitions, her friendship with Stephanie, and even her sexuality. Without either the Lazarus Club’s stability or Stephanie’s schemes to hold her up, Ava must find a way to forge her own identity. Cohen’s vibrant, engaging style gives her characters an appealing depth that will leave readers longing for a sequel. (Apr.)