From the New York Times best-selling author of The Middlesteins comes a wickedly funny novel about a thirty-nine-year-old single, childfree woman who defies convention as she seeks connection.
Who is Andrea Bern? When her therapist asks the question, Andrea knows the right things to say: she’s a designer, a friend, a daughter, a sister. But it’s what she leaves unsaid—she’s alone, a drinker, a former artist, a shrieker in bed, captain of the sinking ship that is her flesh—that feels the most true. Everyone around her seems to have an entirely different idea of what it means to be an adult: her best friend, Indigo, is getting married; her brother—who miraculously seems unscathed by their shared tumultuous childhood—and sister-in-law are having a hoped-for baby; and her friend Matthew continues to wholly devote himself to making dark paintings at the cost of being flat broke.
But when Andrea’s niece finally arrives, born with a heartbreaking ailment, the Bern family is forced to reexamine what really matters. Will this drive them together or tear them apart? Told in gut-wrenchingly honest, mordantly comic vignettes, All Grown Up is a breathtaking display of Jami Attenberg’s power as a storyteller, a whip-smart examination of one woman’s life, lived entirely on her own terms.
“Addicting and incredibly refreshing…. Attenberg brings the often upsetting, often comedic realities of life across in poignant, astute vignettes that will live in the reader’s heart for a long, long time.”—Travel and Leisure
“Thank you, Jami Attenberg, for pushing back against society’s assumptions about what is allowed to matter in our lives. For giving us a different kind of narrative. All Grown Up is not all fluffy and lovely. It turns out that we have other stories — we single people. We human beings.”—Bustle
“Revolutionary…. [A] perceptive study of love, sacrifice, and what it really means to be an adult.”—Tablet
“Jami Attenberg deftly travels inside the head of a 39-year-old woman who has no interest in doing what she’s supposed to do and follows her heart instead of her mind—a story that’s sexy, charming, and impossible to put down.”—Newsweek
“Powerful…All Grown Up is so intimately [and] sharply observed.”—Vogue
“Attenberg is one of our finest contemporary storytellers, and here, with her trademark clever, witty voice, she tackles the age-old question plaguing people of all ages: When do we know if we’re actually all grown up?”—Nylon, “50 Books We Can’t Wait to Read in 2017”
“Attenberg knows how to make a reader laugh and feel. This novel takes a hard look at what it means to be a woman living on her own terms.”—Lisa Lucas, Martha Stewart Living, “Page Turners for 2017”
“I read it start to finish in one go, I can’t think of another book I’ve done that about recently.”—Mary Louise Kelly, NPR’s Weekend Edition Sunday
“Attenberg’s fifth novel is her best yet. It’s a super-smart, often extremely funny, sometimes heartbreaking portrait of a 39-year-old, single, child-free heroine in New York City who’s taking her very best shot at living life on her own terms. . . . As angry, sad and raw as it is astute, hilarious and hopeful, All Grown Up puts other novels in this vein to shame.”—The Observer