What if you could re-write the endings to all your life stories, changing them to reflect experience and hindsight? This question is at the heart of The Nobodies Album (Anchor, $15), by Carolyn Parkhurst. Octavia Frost, a moderately successful author, has changed the conclusions of her novels. But that’s not all that is going on in this beautifully written book. Just as Octavia is delivering her latest manuscript to her publisher, she learns that her son, a famous rock star, has been arrested for murder. Although they have been estranged for years, and she is unsure of his innocence, Octavia goes to help him. What follows is part murder mystery, part examination of the forces and choices that sculpt our lives. Perhaps most interestingly, Parkhurst treats us to both the original and the revised endings of Octavia’s novels.
Smart, suspenseful and full of fascinating characters, The Nobodies Album by Carolyn Parkhurst is a literary page turner. Octavia Frost, a moderately successful author, has just put the finishing touches on her new novel (a compilation of her previous novels but with new and different endings). She is in Times Square about to deliver the manuscript to her publisher when she looks up at the news ticker and sees her son, a famous rock star, has just been arrested for murder. The beauty of Parkhurst’s prose drives this complex story of murder, motherhood, loss and reconciliation.