Lucky Us

Lucky Us

A Novel

eBook - 2014
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"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. Advance praise for Lucky Us "Lucky Us is a remarkable accomplishment. One waits a long time for a novel of this scope and dimension, replete with surgically drawn characters, a mix of comedy and tragedy that borders on the miraculous, and sentences that should be in a sentence museum. Amy Bloom is a national treasure."'Michael Cunningham Praise for Amy Bloom Away "A literary triumph . . . Alive with incident and unforgettable characters, [Away] sparkles and illuminates as brilliantly as it entertains."'The New York Times "This whole novel reads like dry wood bursting into flame: desperate and impassioned, erotic and moving'absolutely hypnotic."'The Washington Post Book World "With her sly sense of humor and flair for precise, elegant language, acclaimed author Bloom fashions a spellbinding story of courage and unwavering optimism in the face of daunting odds."'People (four stars) Where the God of Love Hangs Out "Wise and resounding . . . Bloom joins the ranks of the unforgettable: F. Scott Fitzgerald's eyeless time; Virginia Woolf's impassivity in the progress of her characters' lives."'Los Angeles Times "Moving, shocking, written with compassion and understanding and generously reflective of the fragility of our lives."'The Miami Herald "Stirring . . . Characters [are] rendered in sexy, loving, living color."'San Francisco Chronicle.
Publisher: New York : Random House, 2014.
ISBN: 9780812996005
Characteristics: 1 online resource.


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ArapahoeAnnaL Mar 29, 2018

This historical novel set in 1940's America features somewhat eccentric characters with nothing but their courage and determination. It's a terrific, well-written book, unsentimental but with lots of heart. When biological family ties don't work out the characters create a loving family of people who start out as random acquaintances. Poor and unlucky at the beginning of the book, with brains and generosity of spirit, they are truly lucky by the end.

athompson10 Jun 17, 2016

Amy Wood is a confident and descriptive writer who has a knack for inventing interesting characters in interesting situations. Some of this book felt a little disjointed.

Nov 29, 2015

LUCKY US is a novel about love, reinvention, and family (as in the one we’re born into and the one we choose). Kudos to author Amy Bloom for capturing the feel of 1940’s America. Her inclusion within the story of real people, places, and events from that era (such as, actress Patsy Kelly, gossip columnist Hedda Hopper, L.A.’s Firenze Gardens, Fort Lincoln Internment Camp, Little Blue Books, and the Society for Human Rights) were interesting and informative. Even the titles of the book’s chapters are engaging vintage song titles, but alas, they have little to no discernible connection to the story. Likewise the book cover art is intriguing but it also has no relation that I can perceive to the plot which is a jumble of some odd situations (lucky and unlucky) in which many sad, strange characters find themselves. Narration varies between first-person, third-person, and letters written by some of the characters which may be confusing to some readers. I can’t say the book is boring, but neither can I recommend it to friends.

Oct 06, 2015

Beautiful talented Iris Acton looks for fame and fortune in 1940s Hollywood and New York City, taking plucky half-sister Eva Logan, the book's narrator, along for the adventure. Just like in Bloom’s earlier book 'Away,' it’s a wonderful journey with great supporting characters. Inventive writing.

Aug 13, 2015

This is a great read. The absence of sentimentality was refreshing and believable. The ending was sudden and didn't seem to suit the narrative. It could have ended with Eva's telegram to Iris.

coroboreefarm Aug 05, 2015

Amy Bloom turns words and sentences into the most entertaining picaresque tales. Lucky Us is played out across a wide geographical stage, during the years 1939-1949, as two sisters, by different mothers, and their rapscallion father, scheme, fight and love their way across America in a stolen station wagon, looking for fame and fortune. Along the way, they meet a colourful and eccentric group of characters who share in and shape their lives.
Amy Bloom writes empathetically and powerfully about shared human emotion and connection. Although short in length, her quirky novels are brilliant and hypnotic, intense and funny, and well worth reading. This would make an excellent book club read.

Jul 09, 2015

Well written but the story jumped around in time and from character to character. I found the ending a bit rushed, and a little unsatisfying.

vicbutterfly Feb 19, 2015

After being so impressed with 'Away', I found this book by the same author confusing, convoluted and disappointing though there were a few interesting scenarios.

Dec 25, 2014

This book has a super opening line and really good characters. Despite the fact that I didn't care for the switches between 1st and 3rd person, it was very well written. The author has a way with words.

Oct 26, 2014

very much enjoyed the journeys of these wonderful, flawed characters... carving out 'good lives' from poor choices is a talent-

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Michael Colford Aug 10, 2014

Amy Bloom's coming-of-age tale set largely in the 40s and 50s tells the story of Eva, who was left by her mother at her father's new home after the funeral of his new wife, then ran away from him with her new older sister Iris so she could find stardom in Hollywood. For the first half of this entertaining and well constructed novel, Eva is a spectator in her own life; too young to really work, unable to go to traditional school, she watches the actions of those around her and learns of the struggle that life can be.

In her teens, a series of tragedies strike that leave her in challenging circumstances, trying to make her way in life with little help and others dependent on her. Yet Bloom maintains a light touch while exploring serious issues. Lucky Us is entertaining, beautifully written, and imaginative. I saw Bloom talk about this novel at Book Expo America and she was a terrific speaker, fun, funny, and fool of life. I recommend Amy Bloom and Lucky Us heartily.

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