Okay, it's happened... I got an email the other day from a friend I knew when I lived in Philadelphia...She'd mentioned to someone we both know (a guy she didn't realize I'd once dated) that I'd written a book about my spiritual attempts to sort out my love life. Apparently, he was a bit concerned that he'd see himself in my pages...that he might be THAT FROG.
"No worries," I wrote back quickly, "he's not in there." Still though--awkward!
Philadelphia was a train wreck for me, romantically speaking...my dating history could be a exhibit in the amphibian house at the Philly zoo. But now that that's behind me, I'm excited to go back and see the city with new eyes. It's been calling to me: Lisa Tucker's fabulous new novel THE CURE FOR THE MODERN LIFE is set in Center City, and Kelly Corrigan's memoir takes place in the same suburb I lived in in law school (there's something wild about reading a memoir and thinking, "I've shopped in that drug store!")
But what really drew me back to those days was Jen A. Miller's amazing travel guide THE JERSEY SHORE. Now I'll confess, when I first moved to Philadelphia, the whole "down the shore" thing baffled me--I thought, Pennsylvania doesn't have a shore...does it?!? But then a friend drove me down to Margate for the day, and suddenly I understood. Jen's book brought back such great memories--the summer my girlfriends and I rented a house in Avalon and spent every weekend soaking up rays by day and dancing at the Princeton at night, the smell of the ocean as you drive over the bridge. It was a much-needed break from the intensity of my newly minted legal career, and Jen captures all that and more.
My favorite part of the book are Jen's essays about her own time down the shore--her family memories, more recent tales of going back and exploring. If you're looking for a way into summer this year, this is a great read! You can win a copy on Jen's blog --just send her a picture of her book in your part of the world.
And I'll be in Philadelphia--creating brand new, happy memories (and hopefully meeting Jen in person)--on Wednesday, May 7th. If you're in the tri-state area, come on by :)