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AuthorAmy Bloom
Cover TypeHard Copy
Date Published2014
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Posted Aug 19, 2014
Category: Fiction
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Synopsis

LUCKY US, by Amy Bloom

 

“My father’s wife died. My mother said we should drive down to his place and see what might be in it for us.”

 

So begins the story of teenage half sisters Eva and Iris in this brilliantly written, deeply moving, and fantastically funny novel by the beloved and critically acclaimed author of Away. Disappointed by their families, Iris, the hopeful star, and Eva, the sidekick, journey across 1940s America in search of fame and fortune. Iris’s ambitions take the sisters from small-town Ohio to an unexpected and sensuous Hollywood, across the America of Reinvention in a stolen station wagon, to the jazz clubs and golden mansions of Long Island. With their friends in high and low places, Iris and Eva stumble and shine through a landscape of big dreams, scandals, betrayals, and war. Filled with memorable characters and unexpected turns, Lucky Us is a thrilling and resonant novel about success and failure, good luck and bad, and the pleasures and inevitable perils of family life. From Brooklyn’s beauty parlors to London’s West End, these unforgettable people love, lie, cheat, and survive in this story of our fragile, absurd, heroic species.

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  •  Fred wrote 1395 Days Ago (positive) 
     
    1
    Being a long term Long Islander I was pleased to read about the Great Neck I remember fondly. How did you decide upon that venue? I really really enjoyed listening to your lush book. Thank you.
     
       
     
     
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  •  Julie_Klein wrote 1388 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    Welcome Amy Bloom, we are thrilled to have you participate in our discussion of your latest novel, LUCKY US!
     
       
     
     
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  •  John_Buscarello wrote 1386 Days Ago (positive) 
     
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    I too grew up on Long Island and found many of those aspects interesting....quite remember the German butcher on Main St. in Hempstead.
     
       
     
     
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  •  John_Buscarello wrote 1386 Days Ago (positive) 
     
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    I particularly enjoyed how you wove the story, meandering to the very moving ending.
     
       
     
     
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  •  Fred wrote 1385 Days Ago (positive) 
     
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    How good looking is Evie? I suspect she was better looking than she knew. She surely was beautiful on the inside!
     
       
     
     
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  •  Anonymous wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    Francisco was established, why did he leave Hollywood?
    Joanne
     
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  •  Rona_Gura wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    I really enjoyed this book. I also grew up on Long Island and, therefore, appreciated the setting. But, another aspect that struck me was the authenticity you brought to each decade your story progressed through. There were small details that you included i.e. reading BUtterfield 8 and Edgar's Little Blue Books, that made each decade seem very real. What is the research process like?
     
       
     
     
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  •  Julie_Klein wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    I loved the array of characters and how richly each one was developed. Your unique writing style grabbed me from the first page. Would you share with us your inspiration for this finely crafted novel?
     
       
     
     
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  •  Julie_Klein wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    Were any other readers in a "love/hate" relationship with Iris?
     
       
     
     
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  •  Fred wrote 1385 Days Ago (positive) 
     
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    I loved how the men recreated themselves in those turbulent times. One hid his Judaism and the other adopted it.
     
       
     
     
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  •  Anonymous wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    On page 213, I do not comprehend what Eva sexual intention is with Dr. Snyder.
     
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  •  John_Buscarello wrote 1385 Days Ago (positive) 
     
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    When I think of American before and after WW2 I think of a very typical family mom - dad - kids, I loved the picture you paint where it's much more chaotic, immigrants, lesbians, etc....I also enjoyed how the focus of the book slowly shifts to Evie from Iris.
     
       
     
     
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  •  Fred wrote 1385 Days Ago (positive) 
     
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    It's almost showtime and I just finished under the wire and I am crying. Joanne
     
       
     
     
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  •  Rona_Gura wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    Whomever asked about Dr. Sndyer, I wondered about that also. It seemed like a one time incident. Why would Eva do that?
     
       
     
     
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  •  AmyBloom wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    Julie:So glad to be here!
     
       
     
     
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  •  Jane_Beddall wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    I am also curious about the Dr. Snyder incident. Not sure if I missed something about the interaction?
     
       
     
     
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  •  AmyBloom wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    Joanne: Francisco (in my mind) had an unhappy love affair and was ready to move on.As for Eva, Dr. Snyder represented a moment and an impulse to be followed. The whyt is they why of why any of us have ever kissed a stranger. (Is that just me?)
     
       
     
     
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  •  John_Buscarello wrote 1385 Days Ago (positive) 
     
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    Welcome Amy - you can see your book has created quite a lot of buzz!
     
       
     
     
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  •  AmyBloom wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    Dear John: So often, our pictures of the past are whatever pcitures we've seen. The 50s certainly did its best to tone down the turbulence and movement of the 40s (for example, many, many factory owner wrote the government, begginf to be allowed to employ the women after the war's end. No dice--and a lot of gov't posters urging women to be patriots and go home! (White women, of course.)
     
       
     
     
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  •  AmyBloom wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    I love the question about Evie's appearance. She is not a beauty as a girl (unlike Iris, who dazzled from birth) but she is a very attractive person, who grows more so. OWe see that people are drawn to her, her soul, as I see it, shines out of her big eyes.
     
       
     
     
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  •  AmyBloom wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    Rona: the research was huge and immersive. The only way to allow the reader to truly enter the book and the world is to make it 360 degrees--so that the detail is not ornament, it is just part of the world we are now in.I wouldn't spend time explaining about why women wear pants so often, if Im writing about the present; likewise, back story is a drag when writing about the point. The goal is to make the past NOW.
     
       
     
     
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  •  Jane_Beddall wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    Should we have been able to figure out whether or not Eva went to medical school? Was the statement that she "waiting to become, busted out as a psychic" a suggestion that she found her calling while thinking she needed to be something else?
     
       
     
     
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  •  John_Buscarello wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    Interesting reversal -- Evie's looks vs. Iris and their sexuality....not playing to norms...
     
       
     
     
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  •  Fred wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    Who will play Evie in the movie?
     
       
     
     
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  •  AmyBloom wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    My gosh, let me watch out for typos! I got excited.
     
       
     
     
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  •  John_Buscarello wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    Gus is such an interesting character - getting deported and such...I wonder if he will ever learn that Iris was that one who accused him of being a spy....a sequel?
     
       
     
     
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  •  Fred wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    Do you have a sister? I do! Joanne
     
       
     
     
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  •  AmyBloom wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    WW 2 was an opportunity/crisis for many people to re-invent themselves--hide their religion, their sexuality, their origins (Archie Leach: Cary Grant; Betty Persky: Lauren Bacall)).
     
       
     
     
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  •  AmyBloom wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    I don't know what to say about my writing style,Julie, except that in the end, you write as you are and there is no fooling the reader. As for my characters: each one is a full human being to me; I see the world as they see it, as they live in it, in the moments that I write them.
     
       
     
     
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  •  Anonymous wrote 1385 Days Ago (positive) 
     
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    I am moved to read every single book you have written and will write. Thank you for your gift. Joanne
     
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  •  Anonymous wrote 1385 Days Ago (positive) 
     
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    Why Great Neck?
     
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  •  AmyBloom wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    I didn't care much for Great Neck when I was raised there (although I loved the parks and riding my bike everywhere) but now that it is so utterly altered, I do miss the ladies in white mink jackets and high heels and Caddys clogging Middle Neck Road. They did have energy!
     
       
     
     
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  •  MitchTobol wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    Did you attend GN North or South?
     
       
     
     
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  •  Anonymous wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    What was the inspiration for Clara? She adds a certain something to the story.
     
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  •  Anonymous wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    If anyone likes to read short stories, I strongly recommend Amy Bloom's collection titled COME TO ME
     
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  •  John_Buscarello wrote 1385 Days Ago (positive) 
     
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    There are so many things in the book that today would be impossible - or seemingly impossible. Stealing Danny from the orphanage -- faking the application to Med School....and yet there are things like deporting Gus could easily happen in our world today.
     
       
     
     
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  •  Anonymous wrote 1385 Days Ago (positive) 
     
    1
    Hi Amy, I really enjoyed your book as well. What inspired you to write about that specific time period? We're any of your characters based on people you know? Finally if you were to cast a movie who would you choose to portray your main characters?
     
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  •  Julie_Klein wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    Hello everyone,
    I just spoke to Amy - she is no longer online with us - she had to take care of something. Amy welcomes you to visit her site and reach out to her through the following link: http://amybloom.com/
    Thanks!
     
       
     
     
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  •  Julie_Klein wrote 1385 Days Ago (neutral) 
     
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    www.amybloom.com
     
       
     
     
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Other Books by Author

Come To Me

Away

A Blind Man Can See How Much I love You

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