Happy US book birthday to HER TURN by Katherine Ashenburg, out today from Harper Perennial!

  • One of The Globe and Mail’s “Summer 2021 books preview: 40 hot reads that will captivate you” One of Maclean’s’ “20 books you should read this summer”
  • One of the CBC’s “21 Canadian books we can’t wait to read in July”
  • And a 49th Shelf “Most Anticipated” pick!

“Balancing silly and laugh-aloud with sobering, pensive and emotionally gratifying is no small feat, and yet Ashenburg — who once upon a time wrote a PhD dissertation about Charles Dickens — writes with the sure-footedness of a lifetime reader.” —The Toronto Star 

“[A] Nora Ephron-esque comedy of social manners.” —The Globe and Mail

“What a gem this novel is. Hilarious, wise, and humane, Her Turn follows one woman’s twisting path through a maze of love and betrayal and forgiveness. It is infused with the joyful spirit of Nora Ephron and lit with a charm all its own.”—Elizabeth Renzetti, author of Based on a True Story

“Ashenburg’s gratifying latest follows a journalist who starts a dubious friendship with her ex-husband’s wife. . . . With its fruitful examination of betrayal and forgiveness, Ashenburg’s engrossing [novel] should appeal to fans of Nora Ephron.” —Publishers Weekly
“This portrait of a contemporary woman (set firmly in 2015) is a striking analysis of journalism, adultery, divorce, parenting teenagers, and caring for elderly parents; perfect for fans of Emma Straub.” —Booklist

“Ashenburg writes candidly about a complex character. . . . Liz is never shamed for wanting love, sex, or companionship, although she often goes about it the wrong way. None of the characters are written off as easy ‘bad guys,’ not even Liz’s ex-husband or his new wife. . . . A look at betrayal and forgiveness that nicely balances humor and depth.” —Kirkus Reviews

For fans of Nora Ephron and Jennifer Weiner, here is Katherine Ashenburg’s witty, contemporary new novel about a forty-something newspaper columnist navigating her bold next chapter, set in Washington against the 2015 US presidential primary.

In the autumn of 2015, forty-something journalist Liz is working at a national newspaper in Washington, D.C., where Hillary Clinton’s run for the presidency is the talk of the town. The divorced parent of a college-age son, she appears to lead a full, happy life: devoted friends, a job she adores, a breezy dating life. But deep inside, Liz is stalled in neutral, stuck in a clandestine affair with her boss and still brooding on her marriage, which ended in betrayal, hurt and anger ten years ago.
 Liz’s job is to edit “My Turn,” a column of personal essays from readers. Her tidy life is upended when a submission about a marital squabble arrives from Nicole, the woman who had an affair with Liz’s husband and is now his wife. Wife Two has no idea that she is sending an essay to Wife One, and Liz keeps this secret as she engages in an increasingly personal critique of the piece. But the existence of the essay destabilizes Liz, and she starts acting erratically—publishing provocative essays that infuriate her colleagues, investing in a pile of unread self-help books about “forgiveness” and indulging in questionable romantic decisions. Soon she is caught in a tangled web of her own making, with no easy escape.

Katherine Ashenburg is the author of several books and many magazine and newspaper articles. She has written for The New York TimesThe Globe and Mail and Toronto Life, among other publications. Her books include The Mourner’s Dance: What We Do When People Die, and The Dirt on Clean: An Unsanitized History, which was published in twelve countries and six languages. In former incarnations, she was a producer at CBC Radio and was The Globe and Mail‘s Arts and Books editor. In 2012, she won a Gold Medal at the National Magazine Awards for her article on old age. In 2018, she published her debut novel, Sofie and Cecilia. Katherine is represented by Samantha Haywood.