Curtis Sittenfeld Books In Order

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Prep (2005) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Man of My Dreams (2006) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
American Wife (2008) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Sisterland (2013) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Eligible (2016) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Short Stories/Novellas

A Regular Couple (2012) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

On 23rd August 1975, a child was born in Cincinnati, Ohio to Paul George an investment adviser and Elizabeth “Besty” Curtis a teacher and librarian. This was their second born child who they named Elizabeth Curtis Sittenfeld. As for religion, Sittenfeld is half Jewish and half catholic. She got her basic education at Seven Hills schools then attended Groton school in Massachusetts for her high school education. It is here that her writing skills became evident as she won the fiction contest organized by Seventeen Magazine in the summer of 1992, a year before she graduated from high school. During vacations, she would go to a big house near the ocean in Westpot, Massachusetts. Here, she wrote chronicles about her family in the house’s guest book.

For college education, Curtis enrolled at Vassar College in Poughkeepsite, New York but later transferred to Stanford University in Pato Alto, California where she studied Creative Arts. She was also responsible for writing articles for the college paper and editing a weekly arts magazine. Her achievements in this stage were recognized when she was chosen as among the college women of the year by Glamour Magazine.

After college, she joined the University of Iowa’s Writer’s Workshop where she obtained an MFA. She has since grown into one of the most avid novelists alive with several best sellers to her name. These include Sisterland, Prep, American Wife and The Man of My Dreams. These have been translated to twenty five languages with each book having several notable achievements.

Prep and American Wife have both been nominated for the UK’s Orange Price. Prep was chosen to be among the Ten Best Books of 2005 by The New York Times. American Wife was chosen to be among the Ten Best Books of 2008 by People, Entertainment Weekly and Time.

Other than her novels, Curtis has written several non-fiction pieces which have been featured in The Atlantic Monthly, Salon, Slate, The New York Times and Glamour to name but a few. Among other major achievements is that she was once hosted on CBS’s “Early Show,” NPR’s “Fresh Air” as a guest and has interviewed Michelle Obama for Time magazine.

Prep was Curtis Sittenfeld’s first novel. It took her three years to write and finally published it in 2005. It has been described as an insightful and funny story told using just the right words. The plot surrounds Lee Fiora an intelligent fourteen year old who attends a prestigious school in Massachusetts called Ault School. It is from admission to this school that the typical American coming of age story is told but with several twists. This story encompasses gender, race and class issues in one envelope creating a story that is relatable and educational at the same time.

Lee Fiora is a scholarship student who is admitted to a prestigious school only to find out that it is not what she thought it would be. Ault School’s brochures showed every teenagers dream high school; boys chatting in front of old brick buildings whereas the girls were in kilts holding lacrosse sticks on beautiful athletic fields. When she bids farewell to her animated family back in Indiana and her father drops her in front of her dorm she is surprised by what she finds. Her classmates have characteristics that fascinate and intimidate her at the same time. From the language to their lifestyle she is intrigued and strives to be like them.

What ails Lee is the fact that she is of a lower social standing and feels like an outsider. She takes it upon herself to observe and try to fit in. By the time she is a senior she has done it but some events arise which just complicate matters a little. She has some very intense friendships with girls, complicated relationships with the teachers and her time is consumed by a guy who is not her boyfriend but not just her crush either. He ranks in between. All these gang up and cause strains in Lee’s relationship with her family. It is a painful, thrilling but funny story!

Prep will be made into a comedy series by Colleen McGuiness the former 30 Rock writer/producer and Carolyn Strauss the Game of Thrones executive producer.

American Wife is yet another book by Curtis Sittenfeld which is a worldwide accepted bestseller. Telling the story of how a woman moves from being a mere librarian to America’s first lady, this is an intriguing story. It is believed that the book is based on the life of Laura Bush who is the wife to the former President Bush.

The protagonist Alice Blackwell was born in the 1940s and raised in the small town of Wisconsin. As she grows up she learns how to be well-mannered and polite but at seventeen years of age, her life takes a turn after a tragic accident. She is left lonely and with deep understanding on how fragile life can be. A decade later she is working as a librarian; her demeanor serious and thoughtful. It is at this time that she meets a wealthy guy; the son of a bastion family of the Republican Party. She on the other hand is a registered Democrat. The first sign of different ideologies and beliefs. At first she does not like the guy and resists his charm but she is unable to hold back for long. She finds herself falling in love with this man.

The Blackwell family owns a country club and summer estate that Alice is tasked with managing. Soon, she is the wife to a governor with power, influence, responsibility and privilege. As years go by, her husband becomes president and the responsibilities increase. But her private beliefs do not agree with her public persona. As the husband’s second term in presidency approaches, Alice finds herself in a dilemma. She suddenly realizes that she is married to a man she loves but disagrees with. What is the right course of action to take? Has she done the best in terms of her life’s trajectory? These are some of the questions that she needs to answer. Her dynamic and complex character makes the story unfold in an unforgettable manner.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Curtis Sittenfeld