In the Midst of Winter

A Novel

In the Midst of Winter

New York Times and worldwide bestselling author Isabel Allende returns with a sweeping novel that journeys from present-day Brooklyn to Guatemala in the recent past to 1970s Chile and Brazil.

An instant New York Times bestseller, In the Midst of Winter is about three very different people who are brought together in a mesmerizing story that offers “a timely message about immigration and the meaning of home” (People).

During the biggest Brooklyn snowstorm in living memory, Richard Bowmaster, a lonely university professor in his sixties, hits the car of Evelyn Ortega, a young undocumented immigrant from Guatemala, and what at first seems an inconvenience takes a more serious turn when Evelyn comes to his house, seeking help. At a loss, the professor asks his tenant, Lucia Maraz, a fellow academic from Chile, for her advice.

As these three lives intertwine, each will discover truths about how they have been shaped by the tragedies they witnessed, and Richard and Lucia will find unexpected, long overdue love. Allende returns here to themes that have propelled some of her finest work: political injustice, the art of survival, and the essential nature of—and our need for—love.
  • Atria Books | 
  • 352 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781501178146 | 
  • September 2018
List Price $17.00 (price may vary by retailer)
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Reading Group Guide

This reading group guide for In the Midst of Winter includes an introduction, discussion questions, and ideas for enhancing your book club. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.

Introduction

A blizzard in New York City brings together three strikingly different people, each burdened with a difficult past. Lucia, an aging Chilean writer who has survived political exile, disease, and betrayal, is marooned with her dog in a basement apartment in Brooklyn. Richard, an academic chairman at NYU, is a broken man haunted by guilt for his fatal failures as a husband and father. And Evelyn, a brave young Guatemalan woman, is an undocumented home health aide who fled her native country due to gang violence, which claimed the lives of her two brothers and very nearly destroyed her own.

Over the course of several days, these three—each a misfit in a different way—are forced by circumstances into a rare level of intimacy. As the result of a shocking crime, they depart on a precarious epic journey that reveals their painful inner demons and ultimately enables them to forge a tentative peace with their pasts.

Topics & Questions for Discussion

1. Each of the three main characters—Lucia, Evelyn, and Richard—experien see more

Articles About This Book

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Posted on Off the Shelf

Posted by Off the Shelf Staff

It’s only January, but we have big plans for 2018. In fact, we’ve already mapped out our book club plans for the entire year! That’s right. We made a calendar for the perfect year of book club reading and discussion. And we want you to get in on...

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About the Author

Isabel Allende
(c) Lori Barra

Isabel Allende

Born in Peru and raised in Chile, Isabel Allende is the author of a number of bestselling and critically acclaimed books, including The House of the SpiritsOf Love and ShadowsEva LunaThe Stories of Eva LunaPaula, and The Japanese Lover. Her books have been translated into more than thirty-five languages and have sold more than 65 million copies worldwide. She is the receipient of the Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters, and she divides her time between California and Chile.

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