New Novel Deals With Parenting in Today’s Environment of Racial Conflict and Distrust
By: Susan Pashman
A professor of Women’s History and her husband, an environmental policymaker in the New York City mayor’s office, are raising their two brainy children on New York’s ultra- liberal Upper West Side. Their fierce love is tested in a startling eruption of racial hostility and political chicanery when, on a school trip, their son Zack and his best friend, Cyrus, are horsing around and Cyrus falls, and later dies.
The fact that Cyrus is black, that his mother is Zack’s mother’s closest friend--that jealousy, suspicion and resentment have long been simmering in the community, and that there are powerful political forces at work as well--all conspire to reveal an ugly underbelly of the community both parents have worked so hard to fashion into a model multiracial world.
The remarkable friendship of these two women, black and white, united by their ideals and their devotion to their children, then divided by events, begins to spiral downward. How much love will it take to repair all the damage?
Harvard Square Editions, the fiction arm of Harvard University Press, will release Upper West Side Story on May 27, 2015. Harvard Square Editions is dedicated to bringing out art that is both bold and accessible. The mission of Harvard Square Editions is to publish fiction concerned with contemporary social issues; Ms. Pashman’s novel, her second, deals with parenting in an environment of racial conflict and distrust.
Susan Pashman is a philosophy professor and former attorney. While in law school, she served a year in the New York City Council President’s office; some of what she learned there has found its way into this story. But most of this book derives from her experience raising two boys on her own in Brooklyn. Many of her sons’ childhood exploits, and the hopes and fears she had for them, became the heart of this novel. She now resides in Sag Harbor, New York with her husband, Jack Weinstein.
If you would like to have a review copy of Upper West Side Story, or if you would like to interview Susan Pashman, please contact the author. Visit her website at http://www.susanpashman.com. To download a press kit, please visit http://www.susanpashman.com/#