Shelter in Place by David Leavitt
It is the Saturday after the 2016 presidential election, and in a plush weekend house in Connecticut, a group of New Yorkers has gathered to recover from what they consider the greatest political catastrophe of their lives. Liberal and like-minded, the friends have come to the countryside in the hope of restoring the bubble in which they have grown used to living.
Moving through her days accompanied by a carefully curated salon, Eva Lindquist is a generous hostess with an obsession for decorating. Yet when, in her avidity to secure shelter for herself, she persuades her husband to buy a grand if dilapidated apartment in Venice, she unwittingly sets off the chain of events that will propel him to venture outside the bubble and embark on an unexpected love affair.
A slyly comic look at the shelter industry, Shelter in Place is a novel about house and home, furniture and rooms, safety and freedom and the insidious ways in which political upheaval can undermine even the most seemingly impregnable foundations.
"A wickedly funny and emotionally expansive novel about all the bewildering ways we seek solace from the people and things that surround us” – Jenny Offill
“Very funny and unexpected, a material response to our times, plush as velvet” – Rachel Cusk,
“There is an art to writing about unlikable people while still engaging the reader to invest in their indulgence, vanity and, yes, happiness. Leavitt unfurls a droll drawing-room pastiche that evokes la dolce vita as 'Seinfeld' episode … It's Aaron Sorkin on steroids. And surprisingly compelling ... Leavitt, cleverly crafting a New Yorker cartoon in words, proves there is still some navel-gazing worth reading” – New York Times Book Review
“I've long been a fan of David Leavitt's work, for its range, its depth, its smarts and its humour. He is a phenomenal and prescient writer” – Justin Torres,
“Leavitt is a master stylist ... An important writer. He is the rarest of all birds – a man of letters” – Edmund White,
Publication Date: 12 November 2020