The reader knows by page one of QUEEN FOR A DAY (Delphinium) that Mimi Slavitt’s three-year-old son is autistic, but if anyone told her, she wouldn’t listen, because she doesn’t want to know―until at last Danny’s behavior becomes so strange even she can’t ignore it.
After her son’s diagnosis Mimi finds herself in a world nearly as isolating as her son’s. It is a world she shares only with mothers like herself, women chosen against their will for lives of sacrifice and martyrdom. Searching for miracles, begging for the help of heartless bureaucracies while arranging every minute of every day for children who can never be left alone, they exist in a state of perpetual crisis, normal life always just out of reach.
In chapters told from Mimi’s point of view and theirs, we meet these women, each a conflicted, complex character totally unsuited for sainthood and dreaming of the day she can just walk away. Taking its title from the 1950s reality TV show in which the contestants, housewives living lives filled with pain and suffering, competed with each other for deluxe refrigerators and sets of stainless steel silverware, Queen for a Day portrays a group of imperfect women living under enormous pressure. Author, Maxine Rosaler tells their stories in ironic, precise and vivid prose, with dark humor and insight born of first-hand experience.
I have been writing fiction and personal essays for a long time. For many years, I earned a living doing freelance writing of one sort or another–journalism, newsletters, business brochures, young adult nonfiction books, et cetera. I also copy edited mass-market novels. My stories and essays have been published in literary quarterlies such as The Southern Review, Glimmer Train, Witness, Fifth Wednesday, Green Mountains Review and The Baltimore Review. I received a New York Foundation for the Arts Fiction Fellowship and stories of mine have been cited in editions of Best American Short Stories and Best American Essays. I am the mother of Benjamin, now twenty-six, and Samantha, twenty-nine, and I am married to Phillip Margulies, who is also a fiction writer. We all live in Washington Heights. Queen for a Day was inspired by my life as Benjy’s mother.
Thanks to Suzy Approved Book Tours we have one copy to giveaway. Just tell us what you’re looking forward to reading this fall. We’ll announce a winner soon. Good luck.
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