Sunday, August 11, 2013

Amy Gail Hansen

Born in the Chicago suburbs, Amy Gail Hansen spent her early childhood near New Orleans. She holds a BA in English from Carthage College in Kenosha, Wisconsin. A former English teacher, she works as a freelance writer and journalist in suburban Chicago, where she lives with her husband and three children. The Butterfly Sister is her debut novel.

About as week ago I asked the author about what she was reading. Hansen's reply:
I have always found it hard to read more than one fiction book at a time, so I am a one-book girl when it comes to novels. My current read? The Obituary Writer by Ann Hood. I picked it up because I was enchanted by the cover image and the title (I used to write obituaries and gave the job to my heroine in my debut novel, The Butterfly Sister.) Hood writes from two different points of view—one is Claire, a suburban housewife in the 1960s and the other is Vivien, an obituary writer in 1919. I was hooked from the very first line, which mentions the words affair and missing boy in the same sentence. I am mesmerized by Hood’s writing—her ability to evoke so much emotion in such few words. I have recognized parts of myself in both of the main characters, as Hood captures the female mind beautifully, and this only connects me to her story more.

I like to balance fiction with non-fiction, so the two sides of my brain are both happy, so I’m also reading The Tao of Martha by Jen Lancaster, a hilarious memoir about a woman who tries to emulate Martha Stewart for an entire year. I bought the book at Lancaster’s recent Chicago area signing but I would have picked it up regardless, since I am a wanna-be Martha. I am in love with everything house and home, and try to be a domestic diva, many times with devastating results. Lancaster’s book is fresh, funny, and endearing.
Visit Amy Gail Hansen's website.

--Marshal Zeringue