Meet the four Witkovsky sisters in this “fierce, hopeful” novel about growing old, “lightened by a wicked sense of humor” (Newsday).
Eighty-year-old Jenny—the baby of the family—has flown down to Miami, Florida—that gaudy, pastel-hued haven of the elderly—to look after her two oldest sisters: Eva, still going strong at ninety-five, and Naomi, ninety, who is riddled with cancer but retains her tart tongue and her jet-black head of hair. Then there’s Flora, an energetic eighty-five, who spends her time dating and making the rounds of the retirement homes with her standup routine.
Their parents are long gone, their three brothers more recently so, but the sisters remain a family—with all the arguments and rivalries that entails. In a novel the Los Angeles Times hails as “quietly affecting,” Jenny, Eva, Naomi, and Flora wrestle with aches and pains, wheelchairs and walkers, as well as the questions we all face about independence, loss, and what really matters in the long run.
A former literary editor for the Nation and a New Yorker contributor, Helen Yglesias conjures the unquenchable humor and immense courage of four very different women, and moves us to laughter and tears, in a story Publishers Weekly deems for “anyone who is watching people they love grow old”—or contemplating the experience. “Yglesias’s grasp of character is exhilarating—clear, bold and unflinchingly comic.” —Newsweek
Helen Yglesias (1915–2008) is the author of five novels and several works of nonfiction. A former literary editor of the Nation, she wrote for the New Yorker, the New York Times Book Review, the Los Angeles Times, and Harper’s, among many other publications. She lived in Maine and New York City.