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Impersonation: Book summary and reviews of Impersonation by Heidi Pitlor

Impersonation

by Heidi Pitlor

Impersonation by Heidi Pitlor X
Impersonation by Heidi Pitlor
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  • Publishes in USA 
    Aug 18, 2020
    336 pages
    Genre: Novels

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Book Summary

With the satirical eye of Tom Perrotta's Mrs. Fletcher and the incisiveness of Meg Wolitzer's The Female Persuasion, acclaimed writer Heidi Pitlor tells a timely, bitingly funny, and insightful story of ambition, motherhood, and class.

Together, they make the perfect feminist mother.

Allie Lang is a professional ghostwriter and a perpetually broke single mother to a young boy. Years of navigating her own and America's cultural definition of motherhood have left her a lapsed idealist. Lana Breban is a high-profile lawyer, economist, and advocate for women's rights with designs on elected office. She also has a son. Lana and her staff have decided she needs help softening her image in the eyes of the public and that a memoir about her life as a mother will help.

Allie struggles to write Lana's book as obstacles pile up: not enough childcare, looming deadlines, an unresponsive subject, an ill-defined romantic relationship on the verge of slipping away. Eventually, Lana comes to require far too much of Allie and even her son. Allie's ability to stand up for herself and ask for all that she deserves will ultimately determine the power that she can wield over her own life.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Pitlor's third novel is set during the lead-up to and the aftermath of the 2016 election; she dryly and sometimes poignantly channels the zeitgeist through nuanced characters, settings, and just-right details. Both the story and its resourceful heroine are fresh, intelligent, and charming." - Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

"[S]mart and thought-provoking...While elements of the plot stretch plausibility, such as Lana's team signing off on Allie's embellishments, the sharply observed depictions of how lives are shaped by financial status ring all-too true. Fans of Meg Wolitzer's The Female Persuasion will want to take a look." - Publishers Weekly

"[A] searing and nuanced exploration of identity." - Booklist

"In a novel that's smart, surprising, thought provoking, and bound to set a few readers on edge, making for good book-club debate, Pitlor offers an astute study of what it means to be a woman today." - Library Journal

"By turns revealing, hilarious, dishy, and razor-sharp, Impersonation lives in that rarest of sweet spots: the propulsive page-turner for people with high literary standards." - Rebecca Makkai, author of The Great Believers

"Smart, funny, and provocative, Impersonation tunnels through our current politically-charged American landscape with humor and empathy. It's a story of parenting—and surviving—in a time when the messy realities of everyday life often clash with ideology. As page-turningly readable as it is relatable. I'll be recommending to my book group." - Jessica Shattuck, author of The Women in the Castle

"Heidi Pitlor has written a wonderfully rare thing: a comedy of manners set in the 21st century that brilliantly grapples with some of the more thorny issues of class, privilege, and parenting of our day. Smart, funny, and generous in spirit, Impersonation is an engaging meditation on who controls the narrative and why it matters. A terrific read that will have you hooked from page one." - Kate Walbert, author of A Short History of Women

"Impersonation is the book we need now: an unflinching look at our current moment, and at questions few of us dare to ask. If our personas do good in the world, does it matter what we did to create them? How much hypocrisy are liberals willing to tolerate? Can women raise good men? Provocative, heartfelt, and often hilarious, this is a novel I'll be thinking about for a long time to come." - Anna Solomon, author of The Book of V

The information about Impersonation shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

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Author Information

Heidi Pitlor

Heidi Pitlor is the author of the novels The Birthdays and The Daylight Marriage. She has been the series editor of The Best American Short Stories since 2007 and the editorial director of Plympton, a literary studio. Her writing has been published in the New York Times, the Boston Globe, the Huffington Post, Ploughshares, and the anthologies It Occurs to Me That I Am America: New Stories and Art and Labor Day: True Birth Stories by Today's Best Women Writers. She lives outside Boston.

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