Sunday, November 11, 2012

What is Courtney Miller Santo reading?

The current featured contributor at Writers Read: Courtney Miller Santo, author of The Roots of the Olive Tree.

Part of her entry:
My children have started up with soccer again, which means I’m spending several hours a week in a lawn chair on the side of the field. It offers the perfect opportunity to pick up a well-plotted book that pulls me through the action. One that I can put my finger on a word, look up, and offer an encouraging word to my daughter or son, and then pick right back up into the story. I’ve been reading Laura Lipmann’s back catalog, and finished Hardly Knew Her just in time to pick up her new novel, And When She Was Good. And it is so very good, and so very appropriate to read on the sidelines of a field, surrounded by other mothers. Ohhhh I’ve been wondering about everyone’s...[read on]
About The Roots of the Olive Tree, from the publisher:
Meet the Keller family, five generations of firstborn women—an unbroken line of daughters—living together in the same house on a secluded olive grove in the Sacramento Valley of Northern California.

Anna, the family matriarch, is 112 and determined to become the oldest person in the world. An indomitable force, strong in mind and firm in body, she rules Hill House, the family home she shares with her daughter Bets, granddaughter Callie, great-granddaughter Deb, and great-great-granddaughter Erin. Though they lead ordinary lives, there is an element of the extraordinary to these women: the eldest two are defying longevity norms. Their unusual lifespans have caught the attention of a geneticist who believes they hold the key to breakthroughs that will revolutionize the aging process for everyone.

But Anna is not interested in unlocking secrets the Keller blood holds. She believes there are some truths that must stay hidden, including certain knowledge about her origins that she has carried for more than a century. Like Anna, each of the Keller women conceals her true self from the others. While they are bound by blood and the house they share, living together has not always been easy. And it is about to become more complicated now that Erin, the youngest, is back, alone and pregnant, after two years abroad with an opera company. Her return and the arrival of the geneticist who has come to study the Keller family ignites explosive emotions that these women have kept buried and uncovers revelations that will shake them all to their roots.

Told from varying viewpoints, Courtney Miller Santo's compelling and evocative debut novel captures the joys and sorrows of family—the love, secrets, disappointments, jealousies, and forgiveness that tie generations to one another.
Learn more about the book and author at Courtney Miller Santo's website.

The Page 69 Test: The Roots of the Olive Tree.

Writers Read: Courtney Miller Santo.

--Marshal Zeringue