Leftovers: A Novel is the latest novel by the wonderful Arthur Wooten, (“If Armistead Maupin and David Sedaris had a love child, it would be Arthur Wooten.” – Greg Archer, The Huffington Post). Leftovers has a strong female protagonist, in the 1950s no less, and manages to capture the spirit of the time period with a peek into the years of change to come.
Our heroine, Vivian Lawson, is beautiful, smart, hard-working, driven and only slightly damaged but not at first. When we first meet Vivian, she is a hot mess of a 50’s housewife leaving a wrecked marriage to a disaster of a man and even her own (moneyed and coldly critical) mother barely has time for her. Vivian trawls around town in a dowdy old shirt dress (not belted due to an early childhood trauma) and spirals into a bad place but she pulls herself together with help from her friends and the not to be underestimated transformational power of Tupperware®. Her personal and professional growth are compelling and you cheer for her to succeed. Vivian has a way with people that surprises even herself; she is self-deprecating, funny and utterly believable as the self-proclaimed worst cook on the planet and using this gift, manages to climb the ranks of Tupperware sales in a bold way.
Arthur Wooten captures the wonderful parts of this time period and even references an all-time favorite book, Marjorie Morningstar, much to my happiness. Show tunes, bad decorating choices and a make-over from on high make this a read you will not want to miss. No spoiler here, you’ll want to read all about Vivian’s travels yourself. Here is the link to Arthur Wooten’s site – if you haven’t read anything by him yet, you will thank me. You are welcome. If you have, then you know you are in for a treat.
About the author:
Arthur Wooten is the author of the critically acclaimed novels Leftovers, Birthday Pie, On Picking Fruit and Fruit Cocktail. He’s also penned the children’s picture book Wise Bear William: A New Beginning and the collection of short stories, Arthur Wooten’s Shorts. A playwright, his works include the award winning Birthday Pie, which had its world premiere at the Waterfront Playhouse, Key West, FL. His one act plays, Lily and The Lunch, have been produced Off-Off Broadway and for two years he was the humorist for the London based magazine, reFRESH. Arthur grew up in Andover, MA and now resides in New York City.