Friday 56 & Book Beginnings: A Lovely, Indecent Departure

A Lovely, Indecent Departure: A Novel by Steven Lee Gilbert

Look, here comes the girl. She is treading alone up the sidewalk. Looking like everyone else of the noontime crowd blissfully strolling the strip mall. But she is not one of them, and never has been.

My boy, Giovanni interjected switching to English, you are in Florence! You must act it! He looked at Anna and pointed at the poster. You know of this? he asked. La Festa Della Rificolona?
Synopsis: A Lovely, Indecent Departure is the riveting and emotionally-charged debut from a promising new voice in literary thrillers, and a captivating story of a mother's love and desperation set amidst the heart wrenching landscape of child custody. Anna Miller wants only one thing, her son, and she will do anything to keep him. When a district court awards custody of Oliver to his father, she abducts the five year old and flees to Italy where with her family's help they disappear into the fabric of her native homeland. 
Told in prose that is both stripped-down and overpowering, Gilbert shapes the everyday conflict of child custody into a stunning search for sense of worth. Standing in the young woman's way is Evan Meade, the boy's guileful and mean-spirited father, who hires a private investigator when the efforts of the embattled local sheriff, Monroe Rossi, fail to track them down. But as the investigation draws them all closer to Anna, Evan's true nature betrays itself and the question of what's in the child's best interest becomes not so clear anymore. 
Objectively detailed, in a voice that refuses to intrude on the minds of its characters, A Lovely, Indecent Departure, captures in stark detail a world in which modern archetypes are turned upside down and shows what an extraordinary splash Steven Lee Gilbert has made with his first novel.
I'm in the middle of A Lovely, Indecent Departure and loving it so far. I've been in touch with the author, Steven Lee Gilbert, and I'll be hosting his guest post tomorrow. He is also giving away two copies (e-book and paper copy) starting tomorrow! So don't forget to come back and enter!

What are you reading? Don't forget to leave a comment with a link to your post!


  1. Hi Aloi,

    Love those lines, although on their own I don't think they would sell me the book. Together with the synopsis though, it sounds like a fantastic read and definitely one for my list.

    By coincidence, here in the UK, I have just been watching a news programme, which gave quite a lot if its air time to a report about British parents who are absconding from the country, in order to escape the clutches of the Social Services department, who are threatening to take their children away from the family home.

    It was a harrowing report and raised much the same reaction from me as I think that this book might.

    Thanks for sharing,


  2. Sounds like a well-paced, colourful novel!

  3. Looks like an interesting read. I'll look forward to your review.

  4. I like how in the opening the narrator is calling the reader's attention. Also, great title.

    Thanks for visiting my blog!

  5. Wow! Great excerpts and the synopsis drew me in! Now I want to know more. Thanks for sharing...and for visiting my blog.

  6. Thanks for visiting my BBOF post. I will be back to see the contest. New Follower.

  7. Interesting beginning, makes me wonder how she is different?

  8. Intriguing synopsis on this one, and the cover image is very unusual. Thanks for sharing.

  9. Both the premise of the story and the Italy setting interest me in this book. Definitely going to read this one eventually.

  10. Sounds like my kind of book! I'll be back for your giveaway. ;)

  11. Hmm...I'm wondering why she is different. Great opening!

  12. I'll be looking for your review!


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