The Center of Everything
Jamie Harrison (Author)
January 12, 2021
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About the Author
Jamie Harrison, who has lived in Montana with her family for more than thirty years, has worked as a caterer, a gardener, and an editor, and is the author of The Center of Everything, The Widow Nash, and the four Jules Clement/Blue Deer mysteries: The Edge of the Crazies, Going Local, An Unfortunate Prairie Occurrence, and Blue Deer Thaw. She was awarded the Mountains & Plains Independent Booksellers Association Reading the West Book Award for The Widow Nash, and was a finalist for the High Plains Book Award.
A Bibliolifestyle Most Anticipated Read of the Year Despite various mysteries and suspicious deaths in this story about a Montana woman uncovering secrets past and present, Harrison wisely concentrates less on plot twists than on exploring the trickiness of memory where love and family are concerned . . . Through small moments, particularly shared meals and drinks, the reader becomes intimately involved in Polly's inner life and falls in love with a vividly portrayed Montana devoid of Western clichés. A sharply intelligent, warmhearted embrace of human imperfection--the kind of book that invites a second reading. --Kirkus Reviews (starred review) Brilliant . . . Harrison plumbs complex family relationships and sheds insight on the power of memories and how they shape her characters. Harrison shines with passages of vivid imagery as Polly gains an added dimension of perception from looking at art and photographs. Readers will find themselves wishing this won't end. --Publishers Weekly (starred review) Lyrical, profound . . . Recommended for book clubs and fans of complex, literary fiction. --Booklist In this exquisitely nuanced, beautifully constructed novel, Harrison draws the reader into young Polly's filtered understanding of her world, rich with happily married couples, vs. the uncertain reality of the adult Polly, coping with memory loss while slowly untangling shocking family secrets. A magnificent gem. --Library Journal A lively narrative . . . Reading The Center of Everything is like traveling further and further into a dream, spiraling around fragments toward a point of love and wonder. It's a redemptive and hopeful novel guided by earthy, reliable men, women and children who inspire and encourage. --Mari Carlson, BookPage The Center of Everything slips deftly through time, all the while taking the reader to the marvelous unfolding of secrets (both wondrous and murderous) that were right before our eyes. How beautifully our attention is distracted and illuminated in this resonant novel. --Joan Silber, author of Improvement This doesn't feel like a work of fiction. It feels real, like reading someone's diary. I'm left convinced that these characters have immortal souls and I find comfort in their familiarity. I want to spend more time in their world, urging them to whisper their secrets in my ear. A brilliant book. --Jamie Ford, New York Times bestselling author of Hotel On the Corner of Bitter and Sweet The Center of Everything is a bighearted, feet-on-the-ground, bracing, intelligent book. Its people will endure in readers' memories, page after compelling page. --Thomas McGuane, author of Ninety-Two in the Shade