Molly Ringwald mines the complexities of modern relationships in this gripping and nuanced collection of linked stories, WHEN IT HAPPENS TO YOU. Writing with a deep compassion for human imperfection, Ringwald follows a Los Angeles family and their friends and neighbors as they negotiate the hazardous terrain of everyday life — revealing the deceptions, heartbreak, and vulnerability familiar to us all.
In “The Harvest Moon,” a stay-at-home mom grapples with age, infertility and an increasingly distant husband. In “Ursa Minor,” a former children’s television star tries to rebuild his life after being hospitalized for “exhaustion.” An elderly woman mourns the loss of her husband and her estranged relationship with her daughter in “The Little One.” In “My Olivia,” a single mother finds untapped reserves of strength to protect her flamboyant six-year-old son who wishes only to wear dresses and be addressed as “Olivia.” And in the devastating title story, a betrayed wife chronicles her pain and alienation, leading to an eviscerating denouement.
As the lives of these characters converge and diverge in unexpected ways, Ringwald reveals a startling eye for the universality of loss, love, and the search for connection. An unflinching yet poignant examination of the intricacies of the human heart, WHEN IT HAPPENS TO YOU is an auspicious literary debut.
"When It Happens to You is absolutely lovely, a smart, emotionally sophisticated, intricately dovetailed novel of stories. World, I'm telling you now: Molly Ringwald is the real deal."
-Lauren Groff, author of Arcadia
"A beautiful exploration of how the heart's irrational responses to love and betrayal can stand in the way of forgiveness... Ringwald deftly weaves together the threads of these stories, creating a tapestry that captures the emotional landscape of both young and well-worn relationships."
"Molly Ringwald understands how families work and uses her considerable talents to make them come alive on the page."
-Gary Shteyngart, author of Super Sad True Love Story