9780143125440

YOU ARE ONE OF THEM

A Novel About Secrets, Betrayal, and the Friend Who Got Away

Elliott Holt

Sarah Zuckerman and Jennifer Jones are best friends in an upscale part of Washington, D.C., in the politically charged 1980s. Sarah is the shy, wary product of an unhappy home: her father abandoned the family to return to his native England; her agoraphobic mother is obsessed with fears of nuclear war.

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Sarah Zuckerman and Jennifer Jones are best friends in an upscale part of Washington, D.C., in the politically charged 1980s. Sarah is the shy, wary product of an unhappy home: her father abandoned the family to return to his native England; her agoraphobic mother is obsessed with fears of nuclear war. Jenny is an all-American girl who has seemingly perfect parents. With Cold War rhetoric reaching a fever pitch in 1982, the ten-year-old girls write letters to Soviet premier Yuri Andropov asking for peace. But only Jenny's letter receives a response, and Sarah is left behind when her friend accepts the Kremlin's invitation to visit the USSR and becomes an international media sensation. The girls' icy relationship still hasn't thawed when Jenny and her parents die tragically in a plane crash in 1985.

Ten years later, Sarah is about to graduate from college when she receives a mysterious letter from Moscow suggesting that Jenny's death might have been a hoax. She sets off to the former Soviet Union in search of the truth, but the more she delves into her personal Cold War history, the harder it is to separate facts from propaganda.

You Are One of Them is a taut, moving debut about the ways in which we define ourselves against others and the secrets we keep from those who are closest to us. In her insightful forensic of a mourned friendship, Holt illuminates the long lasting sting of abandonment and the measures we take to bring back those we have lost.

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Price: $16.00

ISBN: 9780143125440

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About Elliott Holt

Elliott Holt was born and raised in Washington, D.C., and graduated from Kenyon College. A former copywriter who worked at advertising agencies in Moscow, London, and New York, Holt attended the MFA program at Brooklyn College (where she won the Himan Brown award) at night while working full time in Manhattan during the day. Her writing has been published in the New York Times, Salon, Guernica, Kenyon Review, The Millions, Bellevue Literary Review, The Pushcart Prize XXXV (2011 anthology) and elsewhere. In addition to winning a Pushcart Prize, she was the runner-up of the 2011 PEN Emerging Writers Award. Her first novel You Are One of Them was a New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice.

Praise

“A hugely absorbing first novel from a writer with a fluid, vivid style and a rare knack for balancing the pleasure of entertainment with the deeper gratification of insight. More, please.”Maggie Shipstead, The New York Times Book Review (Editors’ Choice)

“A story about Russia, the United States, friendship, identity, defection, and deception that is smart, startling, and worth reading regardless of when you were born.”Kathryn Schulz, New York Magazine

“Holt's beguiling debut… in which there is no difference between personal and political betrayal, vividly conjures the anxieties of the Cold War without ever lapsing into nostalgia.”The New Yorker

“Alluring…Elliott Holt’s debut novel, You Are One of Them, a story about youth, about lying, about the Cold War, about Russia, and about womanhood, approaches its heady subjects by letting them live and breathe through the narrative itself. To read it is to forget you’re reading a work of literature, and instead to think that someone is telling you a story — someone who happens to have a wildly intelligent sense of detail and just enough restraint to keep her storytelling skill from showing its seams.”The Boston Globe