Suzanne BerneOct 17, 2023
The Blue Window
Marysue Rucci Books 2023
Today I talked to Suzanne Berne about her novel The Blue Window (Marysue Rucci Books, 2023).
Lorna is a clinical social worker, trained to talk to people, but she can’t get through to the two people most important to her; her miserable teenage son and her distant, unhappy mother. She grew up with a deaf father who never explained to her or her brother why their mother suddenly disappeared. Her brother died of AIDS in the 1980s and her father is also gone, but her mother has been coming for Thanksgiving Day since Lorna’s son Adam was born. Now, a neighbor calls to say that her mother, Marika, has hurt her ankle and needs help. Lorna prepares to drive up, and hopes Adam will join her for the drive. Adam hopes to torture and negate himself, so he agrees to the journey. Lorna doesn’t expect that her distant son and mother will bond, or that she will be left out of their relationship.
Suzanne Berne is the author of four previous novels: The Dogs of Littlefield, The Ghost at the Table, A Perfect Arrangement, and A Crime in the Neighborhood, which won Great Britain’s Orange Prize, now The Women’s Prize. She has also published a book of nonfiction, Missing Lucile, about her paternal grandmother. Berne has written frequently for The New York Times and The Washington Post, and published essays and articles in numerous magazines. For many years she taught creative writing, first at Harvard University, and then at Boston College and at the Ranier Writing Workshop in Tacoma, WA. She lives outside of Boston with her husband. They have two daughters. When she is not writing--or thinking about the writing she is not doing--she is often walking her dog or thinking about walking him.