26. Away

A review (can’t recall which) pinned the protagonist, Lillian Leyb, as a completely new kind of woman in fiction — something about her self-awareness, determinism, the way she launched on her quest… i don’t remember, to be honest, because it didn’t turn out to be true. But this is a glorious road novel, with great characters (and far too much sex). Lillian, immigrant survivor of a Russian pogrom, is doing what she can to survive New York in the 20s when she learns her 3-year-old daughter may also have survived and escaped to Siberia. Then the book starts cooking, as Lillian does whatever it takes to make it all the way north. Not for the squeamish, but it has its rewards.

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