“When times are tough, let Agatha Arch have any meltdown you’re repressing in this cathartic and unexpectedly poignant read.” ―Michelle Gable
A quirky, nervous wreck of a New England mom is forced to face her many fears in this touching, irresistible novel from author Kristin Bair.
Agatha Arch's life shatters when she discovers her husband in their backyard shed, in flagrante delicto, giving the local dog walker some heavy petting. Suddenly, Agatha finds herself face to face with everything that frightens her...and that's a loooooong list.
Agatha keeps those she loves close. Everyone else, she keeps as far away as possible. So she's a mystery to nearly everyone in her New England town. To her husband, she's a saucy, no-B.S. writer. To her Facebook Moms group, she's a provocateur. To her neighbor, she's a standoffish pain in the butt. To her sons, she's chocolate pudding with marshmallows. And to her shrink, she's a bundle of nerves on the brink of a cataclysmic implosion.
Defying her abundant assortment of anxieties, Agatha dons her "spy pants"--a pair of khakis whose many pockets she crams with binoculars, fishing line, scissors, flashlight, a Leatherman Super Tool 300 EOD, candy, and other espionage essentials--and sets out to spy on her husband and the dog walker. Along the way, she finds another intriguing target to follow: a mysterious young woman who's panhandling on the busiest street in town.
It's all a bit much for timorous Agatha. But with the help of her Bear Grylls bobblehead, a trio of goats, and a dog named Balderdash, Agatha may just find the courage to build a better life.
“Hilarious and heartbreaking, fresh and wise, and quirky as can be. The talented Kristin Bair introduces us to the touchingly neurotic Agatha Arch―a woman who loves too much and fears too much, and is on the hunt to discover her own singular power. If you love Bridget and Bernadette, please meet Agatha. I loved her, and you will, too.”
―Hank Phillippi Ryan, USA Today Bestselling author of The First to Lie
Kristin Bair is the author of the novels The Art of Floating and Thirsty, as well as essays about China, bears, adoption, off-the-plot expats, and more. Her work has appeared in numerous magazines and journals, including The Manifest-Station, The Gettysburg Review, Flyway: Journal of Writing and Environment, The Christian Science Monitor, Poets & Writers Magazine, Writer's Digest, and other publications. As a writing instructor, her peripatetic nature has landed her in classrooms and conferences around the world. A native Pittsburgher, Kristin now lives north of Boston with her husband and two kiddos.