I've read two of author Jami Attenberg's books before, and I was excited to not only see the author lead a panel of woman authors talking about their upcoming books and writing processes at Book Expo America, but also to stand in line to receive a free autographed copy of Attenberg's newest novel Saint Mazie.
Saint Mazie is a uniquely told story about a girl living only for herself who grows into a selfless woman. Working as a ticket taker at her brother-in-law's movie theater in 1920s New York, Mazie Phillips gets to know the people of her fine city. She dates some of them, she dances with some of them, she drinks with some of them. And then the Great Depression hits and Mazie can't turn a blind eye to the people she knows who are now unable to buy a movie ticket from her because they're living on the streets.
The book is told in three ways: through excerpts from Mazie's autobiography, Mazie's diary entries, and interviews with people who knew Mazie. So you get Mazie's story in her own words, but each of the people interviewed has their own perspective on Mazie's life and a little bit of a life story of their own.
While this book is a work of fiction, Attenberg based Mazie Phillips on a real woman named Mazie who was profiled in an essay by Joseph Mitchell.
If you like historical fiction and inspiring stories, then you'll like reading about Saint Mazie.
Saint Mazie is published by Grand Central Publishing and is on bookstore shelves now. I received a free autographed copy of the book at BEA with no obligation to review.