Big congrats to Nora Zelevansky, whose book Competitive Grieving: A Novel is out TODAY. In full disclosure, we blurbed this book and I really loved it. Here’s the jacket copy:
Wren’s closest friend, her anchor since childhood, is dead. Stewart Beasley. Gone. She can’t quite believe it and she definitely can’t bring herself to google what causes an aneurysm. Instead of weeping or facing reality, Wren has been dreaming up the perfect funeral plans, memorial buffets, and processional songs for everyone from the corner bodega owner to her parents (none of whom show signs of imminent demise).
Stewart was a rising TV star, who—for reasons Wren struggles to understand—often surrounded himself with sycophants, amusing in his life, but intolerable in his death. When his icy mother assigns Wren the task of disseminating his possessions alongside George (Stewart’s maddening, but oddly charming lawyer), she finds herself at the epicenter of a world in which she wants no part, where everyone is competing to own a piece of Stewart’s memory (sometimes literally).
Remembering the boy Stewart was and investigating the man he became, Wren finds herself wondering, did she even know this person who she once considered an extension of herself? Can you ever actually know anyone? How well does she really know herself?
Through laughter and tears, Nora Zelevansky’s Competitive Grieving shines a light on the universal struggle to grieve amidst the noise, to love with a broken heart, and to truly know someone who is gone forever.
I truly recommend this book so much. (It is much funnier than you might think from the subject matter.) Our blurb was: “Nora Zelevansky’s lovely Competitive Grieving is equal parts romantic, thoughtful, and truly moving — as well as being a lively and sincerely funny exploration of how well two people can ever truly know each other. You will hug your friends a little tighter after reading it.” I stand by this! We have one copy to give away.
THE TASK: As usual, I’ll be picking the winner at random. To enter, please comment and address this scenario: Imagine you receive notice that a rich relative you never knew has left you a large sum of money with the caveat that you must spend it on some frivolous. What do you buy?
THE RULES: All entries must be posted in the comments of this post by 9 p.m. Pacific time on Sunday. FYI, if this is the first time you’ve commented here, the system will automatically kick you into comment moderation, but don’t worry, I will rescue you. (Open to US readers only; all prizing courtesy of the publisher. We use affiliate links when available, like the one above to Amazon.)