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In the latest from seasoned Texan social satirist Bird (The Flamenco Academy, etc.), Blythe Young's recent divorce from Trey Dix has left her outside the protective bubble of Austin's high society. As her catering business goes broke and the IRS starts to chase her down, Blythe seeks a haven at Seneca House, the housing co-op where she lived 10 years ago during college. There, she must face Millie Ott, one of many friends Blythe shucked off in a frenzy of social climbing. Once portly Millie is now slender and, as a perfect foil for Blythe, also saintly: she delivers aid to the homeless by way of a tandem recumbent bike (which Blythe names the dorkocycle). At Seneca House, Blythe tries to make amends with people she's stepped on, to avoid the IRS, and to kick both a lingering drug habit and an addiction to scamming people into helping her out. She slowly starts to wins over the affection of her housemates until one of her unthinking decisions brings potential ruin on the co-op's financial well-being. The result is a laugh-out-loud addition to Bird's long line of estrogen-fueled dramedies. (June)
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“Anyone who picks up Sarah Bird's How Perfect Is That expecting chick-lit better be wearing a flack jacket. This is hard-edge, scary-funny social comedy and not for sissies. Brits do this well, but not many Americans. But then again, not many Americans have experienced the poisonous social whirl of Texas Republican Ladies at the zenith of the Bush hegemony. Bird's heroine is admittedly no better than she should be. In fact, she probably deserves Trollope's title: ‘Can You Forgive Her?’ And I, for one, can forgive her without hesitation. She has seen the affect-challenged harpies in all their toxic vulgarity. So forget about Scott McClellan: this is ‘What Really Happened’--out there where it hurts to laugh but you laugh anyway. Then pray.” –Dave Hickey
“A perfect, curl-up-with-a-margarita splash of summer fun. Ms. Bird’s wickedly good grasp of social satire couldn’t be finer.” —The Dallas Morning News
“A delightful tale–part social satire, part comedy, part drama . . . Bird paces her story with rollicking hilarity and scathing insight.” —Candace Horgan, Elle’s Readers’ Prize 2008
“Bird details her pilgrim’s progress with an acute eye and ear–and a scorching sense of humor.” —The Austin Chronicle
“Sparks and laughs fly.” —The New York Post, “Required Reading”
“A fast-paced, fun story by a smart, sensitive woman of a certain age. . . a perfect summer read.” —Palm Beach Post
“How Perfect Is That? Pretty damned perfect. Sarah Bird’s scathingly funny look at red state high society delivers a novel that's equal parts Edith Wharton and Nick Hornby. Hilarious.”–Will Clarke, author of Lord Vishnu's Love Handles and The Worthy
“Friends, you've got a treat in store. A laugh-out-loud riches-to-rags tale, a novel of manners that's perfect for the 'coming to our senses' post-Bush age. How Perfect is That is a fried Twinkie of a book–crunchily witty, creamy-hearted and shockingly delicious.” –Janet Fitch, author of Paint It Black and White Oleander
Praise for Sarah Bird's past work
“Do not eat or drink while reading this book. It has so many laughs I almost choked to death.” –Florence King
“Sarah Bird is a fearless madcap. . . falling-off-the-chair hilarious.” –The Los Angeles Times
“Sarah Bird writes fiction with such energy and snap, her novels seem to be in motion. . . Breathtaking.”
–Dallas Morning News
“Bird’s writing brings to life every person and place. . . Laughter comes often and is uncontrolled. The compulsion to read segments out loud . . . is overwhelming.”–The Chicago Tribune
“A very funny book, too–sometimes savagely so. . . It is, in short, a treat.” –San Jose Mercury News