Single, Carefree, Mellow

Katherine Heiny

In the title story, we meet Maya, who is torn between her wryly funny boyfriend and the allure of her veterinarian. In “Andorra,” a woman’s lover calls her every Thursday as he drives to meet his wife at marriage counselling. “How to Give the Wrong Impression” shows us a woman pining for her roommate, a man who will hold her hand but then tell her that her palm is sweaty. In “The Dive Bar” a girl agrees to have a drink with her married lover’s wife. Revisiting Maya in several stories, chronicling her various states of love, this is a collection about how we are unfaithful to each other, both wilfully and unwittingly. Populated with unwelcome house guests, disastrous birthday parties, needy but loyal friends, and flirtatious older men, the stories are emotionally astute, sexy, and disarming-and they introduce us to a tart, and marvellous, new voice.

Reviews of Single, Carefree, Mellow

  • ‘Adulterers, platonic roommates, and suburban neurotics have never been more relatable’ US Vogue

    ‘A wry, bittersweet debut … like Cheever mixed with Ephron’ New York Times Book Review

    ‘Lorrie Moore’s influence is palpable … these enjoyable stories mark the arrival of an accomplished voice.’ Independent

    ‘No matter how good you imagine it is, it’s better’ Glamour US

    ‘The stories, which read like Woody Allen meets Candace Bushnell, can be fascinatingly sleazy. But they are always funny’ Daily Mail

    ‘The buzziest book of 2015 … This whip-smart collection about women wrapped up in all kinds of love affairs will have you laughing out loud’ Entertainment Weekly

    ‘A book about heartache, adultery, love, and loss that somehow manages to be both laugh-out-loud funny and wise, sometimes in the very same sentence … This book is amazing, brilliant, and nothing short of wonderful’ Jennifer Close, author of Girls in White Dresses and The Smart One

    ‘Heiny’s smart and stylishly-written stories are a delight. The women who populate this book are wonderfully human and relatable, both hapless and full of heart’ Adelle Waldman, author of The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P

    ‘Exquisitely-composed stories (all featuring women in various states of love), Heiny’s book takes a disarming and wry look at the inherent nature of betrayal and secrets within relationships’ Elle UK

    ‘Heiny explores sex, relationships and the internal lives of young women in this charmingly candid collection … Following their stories is like sitting at a dive bar tossing back deceptively pretty, surprisingly strong drinks with a pal who may not always make the best decisions but always comes away with the most colourful tales’ Kirkus

    ‘Writerly seduction … heart-rending’ Janet Maslin, New York Times

    ‘Fizzingly funny short stories’ Lucy Hughes-Hallett, Observer