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Kate Christensen


Kate Christensen

Kate Christensen is the author of eight novels, most recently WELCOME HOME, STRANGER. Her fourth novel, THE GREAT MAN, won the 2008 PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction. She has also published two food-centric memoirs, BLUE PLATE SPECIAL and HOW TO COOK A MOOSE, which won the 2016 Maine Literary Award for Memoir. Her essays, reviews and short pieces have appeared in a wide variety of publications and anthologies. She lives with her husband and their two dogs in Taos, New Mexico.

Kate Christensen

Books by Kate Christensen

by Kate Christensen - Fiction, Women's Fiction

An environmental journalist in Washington, DC, Rachel has shunned her New England working-class family for years. Divorced and childless in her middle age, she’s a true independent spirit with the pain and experience to prove it. Coping with challenges large and small, she thinks her life is in free fall --- until she’s summoned home to deal with the aftermath of her mother’s death. Then things really fall apart. Surrounded by a cast of sometimes comic, sometimes heartbreakingly serious characters --- an arriviste sister, an alcoholic brother-in-law and, most importantly, the love of her life recently married to the sister’s best friend --- Rachel must come to terms with her past, the sorrow she has long buried, and the ghost of the mother who, for better and worse, made her the woman she is.

by Kate Christensen - Adventure, Fiction, Literary Fiction, Suspense, Thriller

The 1950s ocean liner Queen Isabella is making her final voyage --- a retro cruise from Long Beach to Hawaii and back --- before heading to the scrapyard. For the guests on board, it’s a chance to experience a bygone era of decadent luxury, complete with fine dining, classic highballs, string quartets and sophisticated jazz. Smoking is allowed but not cell phones --- or children, for that matter. But this is the second decade of an uncertain new millennium, not the sunny, heedless mid-20th century, and certain disquieting signs of strife and malfunction above and below deck intrude on the festivities, throwing a trio of strangers together in an unexpected and startling test of character.

by Kate Christensen - Food, Nonfiction

In the tradition of M. F. K. Fisher, Laurie Colwin and Ruth Reichl, BLUE PLATE SPECIAL is a narrative in which food --- eating it, cooking it, reflecting on it --- becomes the vehicle for unpacking a life. Kate Christensen explores her history of hunger --- not just for food, but for love and confidence and a sense of belonging --- with a profound honesty, starting with her unorthodox childhood in 1960s Berkeley as the daughter of a mercurial legal activist who ruled the house with his fists.

by Kate Christensen - Literary Fiction, Women's Fiction

The Astral is a huge rose-colored old pile of an apart­ment building in the gentrifying neighborhood of Greenpoint, Brooklyn. For decades it was the home of the poet Harry Quirk, his wife, Luz, and their two children. But Luz has found (and destroyed) some poems of Harry’s that ignite her long-simmering sus­picions of infidelity, and he’s been kicked out. Now he must reckon with the consequence of his literary, marital, financial and parental failures.