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Jamie Day Books In Order

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Publication Order of Standalone Novels

The Block Party (2023)Description / Buy at Amazon
One Big Happy Family (2024)Description / Buy at Amazon

Jamie Day
Jamie Day lives in one of those picture perfect, coastal New England towns that you see in the movies. Just like in the movies, she’s got two kids and this adorable dog to fawn over.

When Jaime’s not busy reading or writing, she enjoys cooking, the ocean, yoga, and long walks on the beach with the kids, the dog, or sometimes both.

For “The Block Party”, she developed some basic ideas for the characters, but they all evolved and changed while she got more precise about their personalities and motivations. As she wrote the novel, she had the chance to go beyond these caricatures (pretty cheerleader, pushy dad, suspicious wife, sexy neighbor, and controlling husband) and dive deeper into their personas, adding in these extra histories and layers to give them plenty of distinction and depth.

Jamie wanted to create these two parallel perspectives from different generations, and show these two vantage points of the same exact scenario which would eventually converge. This approach allowed him to demonstrate how exactly these different generations saw things and later on help one another evolve and grow. While the younger person considers the lives of her peers, the older character does the same for hers until their worlds collide. The reader is going to realize by the end that there’s tremendous overlap between both of these generations and that our challenges and issues are less about age and more about being human.

She had a lot of fun writing Lettie’s character. From Jamie’s own experiences raising a teenaged daughter, she has found that while she sometimes employs a minimal vocabulary, sometimes, she offers him a glimpse into her layered and vibrant inner world. Writing her first person made perfect sense since it allowed him to show both of these worlds simultaneously.

Lettie might be a super softie at heart, she also gets to say what we wish we said, yet think of five minutes after the fact. However her jabs are never mean spirited, so she’s not alienating any of the characters in her life. Jamie likes how tortured she also is too. She can remember being this age and how heightened all of the emotions were. Calling this to mind made the writing almost too easy for him.

Even though the events of the novel are extraordinary, the challenges the characters face are much more relatable. Alcoholism among women is cited as an epidemic often, and its presentation can differ from our preconceived notions about this disease. It can happen in plain sight and, due to social norms, stay hidden even from the abuser. Jamie’s got family experience with alcoholism, and all of his characters need challenges to overcome, so she felt that this would be a good issue for Alex to face as Jamie brought some of his own personal experiences to bear.

Jamie backed the novel up a year, instead of taking the reader forward in time, for multiple reasons. The novel is about people that could be our neighbors and friends, and she wanted the reader to feel as though they were experiencing the events simultaneously with the characters. So instead of learning about motives after the fact, the reader becomes a part of the unfolding drama, and learns of the motives through his characters’ actions. It gives the book much more urgency, like you know the accident is coming, however you are not quite sure where or when, which heightens the stakes for the reader and gives them this sense of urgency.

Another critical factor in the decision to make the novel back up to the previous year came down to who this story is even about. If she wanted to just tell a procedural, she would have to put the cops at the center of their investigation, or a character would need some compelling reason to take the role of investigator on (either they got the wrong guy or that character doesn’t believe the cops are doing a good job). In a case like that, the crime would become the bigger story, however she wanted this novel to be about the people populating his story.

He had the idea to bookend the story with block parties one year apart, in order to give this story a symmetry and give him a timeline to reveal motives and characters. Once she made this choice, the seasons became a natural and a familiar marker to show time’s passing.

“The Block Party” is the first stand alone novel and was released in 2023. Meet your neighbors, this summer.

The residents living on the exclusive cul-de-sac on Alton Road are entangled in this web of scandal and secrets that is utterly unknown to the outside world, and even to one another.

On the night of the annual Summer block party, there has been a murder. However who did it and why takes readers to a year ago, while betrayals and rivalries unfold, learning that the true danger lies inside of their own block and nothing (and nobody) is ever like they appear.

This novel immediately transports you right to its suburban hotbed, which is rife with whispered rumors, social and personal peril, and prying eyes. It makes clever use of shifting perspectives, canny flashbacks, social media scrums, this is a suburban Rear Window: nail biting, delicious, and totally unputdownable. This is brilliantly plotted, highly engaging, and totally amazing, with a fully realized and complex cast of characters, this is a scorching knockout. Jamie knows how to keep you guessing and the pages turning.

One Big Happy Family is Jamie’s second novel. It’s about a happy big family, who really aren’t so happy. It takes place in Jonesport, Maine, at this funky hotel close to Acadia National Park.

The book centers on this young woman, named Charley Kelley, who works and lives at the hotel as she cares for her ailing nana, who is suffering from dementia.

When the owner of the hotel dies, his three daughters show up in Maine for the funeral and a will reading. The Bishop sisters and Charley are going to learn that getting what you deserve is not always the same as getting what you want.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Jamie Day

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