Whatcha Reading, Jennifer Haupt?

Every week we ask an interesting figure what they're digging into. Have ideas who we should reach out to? Let it fly: info@seattlereviewofbooks.com. Want to read more? Check out the archives.

Jennifer Haupt is a Seattle-based journalist, and now, novelist. Her first, In the Shadow of Ten Thousand Hills, comes out tomorrow, April 1st. Join her, in conversation with Jennie Shortridge, for her book release celebration, Friday, April 6th, at 7:00pm at The Elliott Bay Book Company.

What are you reading now?

I’m obsessed with interesting family relationships, the way we build families and the legacy of dysfunction and passion that is passed from generation to generation. Now I’m reading Jhumpa Lahari’s new collection of linked short stories, Unaccustomed Earth, which is fabulous because it takes readers to different locales, familiar (to me) and far-flung: Seattle, Cambridge, India and Thailand. The stories explore various family relationships and the emotional territory that comes along with that.

What did you read last?

The last novel I read was Before Everything, by Victoria Redel. This is a beautifully written, funny and touching, story about the power of female friendships. The story is wonderful and the structure is engaging. These women are frail and funny, and a kind of extended family.

What are you reading next?

Next up for me is The Other Alcott, by Elise Hooper. I’m a bit late on the uptake for this novel about the real sisters behind the characters in Little Women, which has received excellent reviews. I usually stick to contemporary novels, which is a little weird since much of my novel takes place during the civil rights era in Atlanta and the Rwanda genocide of 1994, but sometimes I do like to dip into other time periods. Now, I’m really wanting to escape into a time when life in our country was simpler.