What: Watermark Books & Café invites you to attend a virtual author event with the New York Times bestselling author of The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake! Aimee Bender will join the creator and host of the Lit Up podcast Angela Ledgerwood for a virtual Q&A and discussion of her newest book The Butterfly Lampshade—a luminous, poignant tale of a mother, a daughter, mental illness, and the fluctuating barrier between the mind and the world. Order your signed copies of The Butterfly Lampshade HERE.
When: Thursday, August 6, 2020 at 6:00 p.m. (CT)
Where: This is a virtual event and will be hosted online using Zoom Pro Webinar.
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About the Book
On the night her single mother is taken to a mental hospital after a psychotic episode, eight-year-old Francie is staying with her babysitter, waiting to take the train to Los Angeles to go live with her aunt and uncle. There is a lovely lamp next to the couch on which she's sleeping, the shade adorned with butterflies. When she wakes, Francie spies a dead butterfly, exactly matching the ones on the lamp, floating in a glass of water. She drinks it before the babysitter can see.
Twenty years later, Francie is compelled to make sense of that moment, and two other incidents -- her discovery of a desiccated beetle from a school paper, and a bouquet of dried roses from some curtains. Her recall is exact -- she is sure these things happened. But despite her certainty, she wrestles with the hold these memories maintain over her, and what they say about her own place in the world.
As Francie conjures her past and reduces her engagement with the world to a bare minimum, she begins to question her relationship to reality. The scenes set in Francie's past glow with the intensity of childhood perception, how physical objects can take on an otherworldly power. The question for Francie is, What do these events signify? And does this power survive childhood?
Told in the lush, lilting prose that led the San Francisco Chronicle to say Aimee Bender is "a writer who makes you grateful for the very existence of language," The Butterfly Lampshade is a heartfelt and heartbreaking examination of the sometimes overwhelming power of the material world, and a broken love between mother and child.
AIMEE BENDER is the author of the novels The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake--a New York Times bestseller--and An Invisible Sign of My Own, and of the collections The Girl in the Flammable Skirt, Willful Creatures, and The Color Master. Her works have been widely anthologized and have been translated into sixteen languages. She lives in Los Angeles.
Angela Ledgerwood is the host and creator of the Lit Up Podcast, an interview series with many of the world's most provocative writers. She is also the Editorial Director of the Sugar23 Book imprint at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. She started her career as a features editor at Cosmopolitan Magazine and her nonfiction has appeared in Esquire, New York Magazine, Marie Claire, Elle, Fast Company, Condé Nast Traveler, The Australian and The Australian Financial Review. Born in Sydney Australia, she now lives in Brooklyn, New York.