Books by Marti Leimbach

MARTI LEIMBACH is the author of several novels, including the international bestseller Dying Young, which was made into a major motion picture starring Julia Roberts. Born in Washington, D.C., she attended the Creative Writing program at the University of

AGE OF CONSENT by Marti Leimbach
Released: July 26, 2016

"Devastatingly powerful scenes trapped in a rickety plot. "
An unflinching look at sexual abuse from an author who isn't afraid of difficult subjects. Read full book review >
DANIEL ISN’T TALKING by Marti Leimbach
Released: April 4, 2006

"A skillfully crafted and bracingly unsentimental look at one mother's love—sometimes tender, sometimes frantic, always fierce—in the face of adversity."
The author of Dying Young (1989) tells the story of a young mother with an autistic son. Read full book review >
LOVE AND HOUSES by Marti Leimbach
Released: March 1, 1997

Leimbach bounces back from a disappointing second novel (Sun Dial Street, 1992) with this tart, witty tale of a very pregnant Boston novelist whose handsome, hopelessly neurotic husband abandons her in her seventh month. ``I always compare love and houses—there's something essentially the same about them,'' explains Meg Howe, our frazzled, 37-year-old narrator. ``A new marriage is almost always followed by a new house and that same house is sold like old junk when the marriage collapses. . . . Want to know what walls would say if they could talk? Well, they'd say don't paper me in brocade, but they'd also say, Marry in a bad market, divorce in a good one.'' Meg, who has been left not only pregnant but holding a very large loan and living in an apartment she's unable to sell, knows what she's talking about. Though she realizes she should have anticipated husband Andy's dark-of-night disappearance (it took him five years of false starts finally to marry her), she can't quite accept the fact that he's really left. Humiliated, fat, unable to concentrate on the novel she's writing, Meg struggles through revenge fantasies, childbirth classes, and stoic attempts to resolve her real-estate crisis. Her two best friends, former college roommates, help keep her spirits up when not dealing with their own troubles. But a more effective distraction arrives in the form of charismatic Theo Clarkson, Meg's former boyfriend, now a disgustingly successful bestselling novelist, who buys the house Meg's apartment is in and enlists her help in refurbishing it. Theo also steps in heroically as Meg's birth coach. After baby Frances is born, Andy reappears, and Meg, flush with the power and joy of new motherhood, is in the enviable position of choosing which of two very attractive men will become her daughter's dad. In the romance department, at least, the market is very high. Smart, sharp, and always entertaining. Leimbach exhibits a memorable comic voice. Read full book review >
SUN DIAL STREET by Marti Leimbach
Released: April 1, 1992

Leimbach follows her very successful debut (Dying Young, 1989, which had another life as a 1991 movie) with this lackluster story of frayed family ties. The Haskells, a Massachusetts family, split up when the father dies. Mother and daughter move to Los Angeles while 25-year-old Sam, our narrator, pursues his career in Boston (he manages musical acts) and rejoices that manic-depressive Lois and silly adolescent Ginny are off his hands. Four years later, when the story proper begins, Sam goes out to L.A. for the first time; selfish as ever, he's going for business reasons first, a family reunion second. That reunion is tricky; he must start over with Ginny, who has gone from girl to woman (a moody, tense, fiercely independent woman), and tread carefully around Lois, quite at sea without a caring spouse to supervise her pill-taking. Then, impatiently, Leimbach gives up on this family scene (banishing Lois to Oregon with her lover Van, a corpulent ex-lunatic loathed by Ginny) and wings it from page to page with the help of three new characters: Eli, the owner of a trendy Hollywood restaurant and upscale strip-joint; Eli's sleazy business partner Mikey; and Mikey's beautiful wife, Lucy. Sam learns slowly that Ginny (ostensibly just a waitress in the restaurant) is both Eli's woman and the designer of the strippers' costumes. Scarcely has this sunk in when Eli is electrocuted in his hot tub: accident? murder? Sam goes around and around this question (he never finds out for sure), while making love to Lucy, fending off the madly jealous Mikey, and (in his few calm moments) learning he can no longer play big brother to Ginny. The weak narrative grip, the awkward shifts and dislocations, the bland narrator, and the capricious removal of the most interesting character, the richly ambiguous Eli: all make this a disappointing second offering. Read full book review >