cover image Edie Richter Is Not Alone

Edie Richter Is Not Alone

Rebecca Handler. Unnamed, $23 (206p) ISBN 978-1-951213-17-6

Handler’s affecting and darkly funny debut explores the impact of euthanasia on a family. Edie Richter and her husband, Oren, move from Boston to Edie’s hometown of San Francisco so Edie can be near her father, who has Alzheimer’s. After he stops eating, Edie, without telling her mother or sister, suffocates him. After the funeral, Edie and Oren relocate to Perth, Australia, where Oren’s employer has transferred him. With only occasional freelance work to keep her busy, Edie meanders through her new environment, learning to drive on the left side, hilariously failing to befriend her neighbor, listening to possums fight on her rooftop, and admiring Aboriginal cave art. But she cannot shake the final night she spent with her father, slowly spiraling with her secret as Handler injects breathlessness into each desperate sentence. Edie’s increasingly unpredictable behavior reaches its crescendo with a heartbreaking climax, and along the way, the author explores not merely Edie’s guilt, but the complicated feelings over her loss. This quick, engrossing novel brings laughter and tears. Agent: Steven Salpeter, Curtis Brown. (Mar.)