Other books byVendela Vida
The Believer, Issue 103
The Believer is a monthly magazine where length is no object. There are book reviews that are not necessarily timely, and that are very often long. There are also interviews that are very long. Focusing on writers and books they like, The Believer gives people and books the benefit of the doubt. The working title of this magazine was The Optimist.
Let the Northern Lights Erase Your Name
On the day of her father's funeral, twenty-eight-year-old Clarissa Iverton discovers that he wasn't her biological father after all. Her mother disappeared fourteen years earlier, and her fiancé has just revealed a life-changing secret to her. Alone and adrift, Clarissa travels to mystical Lapland, where she believes she'll meet her real father. There, at a hotel made of ice, Clarissa is confronted with the truth about her mother's history, and must make a decision about how—and where—to live the rest of her life.
From the acclaimed author of the 2007 New York Times Notable Book Let the Northern Lights Erase Your Name comes a stunning novel about the love between husbands and wives, mothers and children. Twenty-eight years ago, Peter and Yvonne honeymooned in the beautiful coastal village of Datça, Turkey. Now Yvonne is a widow, her twin children grown. Hoping to immerse herself in memories of a happier time—as well as sand and sea—Yvonne returns to Datça. But her plans for a restorative week in Turkey are quickly complicated. Instead of comforting her, her memories begin to trouble her. Overwhelmed by the past and unexpectedly dislocated by the environment, Yvonne clings to a newfound friendship with Ahmet, a local boy who makes his living as a shell collector. But a devastating accident upends her delicate peace and throws her life into chaos—and her sense of self into turmoil. With the crystalline voice and psychological nuance for which her work has been so celebrated, Vendela Vida has crafted another unforgettable heroine in a stunningly beautiful and mysterious landscape.
Girls on the Verge
Debutante Dips, Drive-bys, and Other Initiations
In a fascinating look at how young women are coming of age in America, Vendela Vida explores a variety of rituals that girls have adapted or created in order to leave their childhoods behind. Vida doesn't just observe the rituals, she actively participates in them, going as far as spending a week at UCLA to experience rush—she emerges a Tri-Delt. She also goes to Miami to learn about the "quince" (the Latin American celebration of a girl's fifteenth birthday), to Houston to take part in a debutante ball, to Los Angeles and San Francisco to talk to female gang members, to Salem, Massachusetts, to interview a coven of witches, and to Las Vegas to watch young brides take the plunge—some of them in drive-through wedding chapels. With humor, insight, and illuminating detail, she explores girls' struggles to forge an identity and secure a sense of belonging through various rituals—rituals that they embrace without necessarily understanding the comforts they seek or the repercussions of their often all-too-adult choices.