Maya has amnesia about all her sexual experiences, but when her best friend Harper Martin is caught smuggling art objects into the country from Nicaragua she must forget her own problems and rally the townspeople of Provincetown to get him amnesty from prosecution. In the process of garnering town support, she immerses herself in town politics and dynamics and uncovers the role of forgiveness in healing her own pain.
I'm in a movie, I thought as I sat up in bed. This town's a goddamn movie. That's when I looked around the room and realized I wasn't at home.
Laura Marello’s hilarious new novel features a surreal cast of characters, among them the Souza Family (“Provincetown’s version of the Kennedys. They were handsome, glamorous, Catholic and doomed”), Voodoo Woman, and a parrot named Sydney Greenstreet. We come to know them all – fishermen, artists, drug dealers, owners of bars both gay and straight – through the lens of a winsome young amnesiac whose own past is shrouded in mystery. Marello’s passion for art and film, seen in her earlier work, helps propel the action forward to its riotous conclusion; her love for the glorious foibles of our human nature, rendered with compassion as well as humor, keeps us caring about what happens.
Constance Solari, author of Sophie’s Fire
is a first-rate novel, stylistically alive to the sounds, smells, and sights of unorthodox Provincetown in the 1980s. Marello’s new novel shows Provincetown's carnival mindset, disguises, and everyday theater, and forgiveness that shames much of conventional America. The book is rich with the backdrop of Provincetown’s history as a fishing community, and artists’ community. The young heroine is the witness; her vision is vicarious. She suffers a specific amnesia, which forms the deep mystery of the novel. She is also involved with the central “crime” of the novel that seeks resolution. What she will not remember leaves her non-judgmental but in pain. Only the townspeople in Provincetown can help, almost allowing her to love again, leaving the reader to hope that she will, someday. What a very fine writer, and explorer of people and place we have in Laura Marello!
Paul Nelson, author of Burning the Furniture