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Lynda Cohen Loigman Books In Order

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

The Two-Family House (2016) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Wartime Sisters (2019) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Author Lynda Cohen Loigman grew up in Longmeadow, Massachusetts. She got a J.D. from Columbia Law School and her BA in American Literature and English from Harvard College. For eight years, she worked practicing estates and trusts law in New York City.

She works as a student of the Writing Institute at Sarah Lawrence College, and lives with her two kids and her husband in Cappaqua, New York.

While at the Writing Institute, she wrote her debut novel, “The Two-Family House”, which was released in the year 2016.

The book has a touch of truth to it, as her mom and two younger sisters grew up in a two-family house in Brooklyn. Her mother and aunts grew up in the upstairs part, and her grandma’s brother lived in the downstairs with his three daughters and wife.

The book lived in her head for over fifteen years before she even wrote a single word, as she carried with her the stories her aunts and mom told her about how they grew up.

The biggest similarity is the setting, but there are quite a few things different in the book. In fact, the characters of Rose and Helen are quite a bit different from Lynda’s grandmother and her grandmother’s sister-in-law.

She set “The Two-Family House” in New York because it is where her mother grew up and it is also the setting for “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn”. This book has cast a spell over Lynda since she was ten, and is her favorite childhood novel. It is also a book she says she has read fifty times.

For Lynda, inspiration has always come from the women that are in her family. When she and her younger sisters would get together, they would tell stories about growing up in the fifties. She couldn’t imagine anything better than the life they had in Brooklyn. These stories they would tell were the food of her youth.

Each one is filled with emotion and rich with detail that Lynda returns to them every single time she sits down to write. Her intention is to create characters for her readers that feel like people that are from their own families. Both the warmth and intimacy she felt listening to their stories is something she tries to duplicate while writing.

She read an article about predicting the gender in unborn kids. It got her wondering if things would have been different for her mother if both families living in their home didn’t have three kids each. She was able to reimagine the house but with entirely different situations and residents. A family having all boys while the other has all girls seemed like a great place to brew up tension and drama.

Before she was a writer, Lynda worked as a lawyer. By the time she finished writing her first novel, she was 47 years old, and was unsure she could even finish writing an entire novel. She was simply unsure she had the stamina to finish it, and by the time she did, she realized it was step one on what would be a long journey for her.

During this part of things, you have to connect with all kinds of different people. There is a whole new education to be a part of and it can be easy to get insecure during the entire thing. You must pay attention to publicity and book marketing and what books get mentioned in certain newspapers and magazines.

When she is busy trying to get her book published, she goes back to reading books. This is something that helps remind her of why she began writing to start with.

“The Two-Family House” was picked by Goodreads as one of their best books of the month for March 2016. It was later nominated for the Goodreads Choice Awards in Historical Fiction in 2016.

“The Two-Family House” is the first stand alone novel, which was released in the year 2016. Brooklyn in the year 1947. During a blizzard, inside a two-family brownstone, there are two babies born within minutes of each other. The mothers are sisters by marriage.

There is the quiet and dutiful Rose, who just wants to please her difficult husband. Then there is Helen, who is generous and warm and her four rowdy sons apparently need her less and less with each passing day. They raise their families next to each other, and support one another, and share an impenetrable bond that is forged before and during that winter’s night.

The storm passes, and life appears to go back to normal, but while the years progress, small cracks start to appear. The once strong friendship between the two women starts unraveling. Nobody knows why and nobody is able to stop it from happening. A misguided decision, and a moment of tragedy. Heartbreak wars against happiness and almost, but still not quite, wins.

The story is made strong by the complexities and dynamics of each of the characters’ relationships with one another. Loigman created a highly interesting story here that makes the reader invest in what is going on, and have a tough time putting the book down for very long. The novel provides you an excellent insight into many of the characters, you get to see how different everyone is from each other, and how they all change over the three hundred pages of the book.

“The Wartime Sisters” is the second stand alone novel, which was released in the year 2019. Two distant sisters, who were both raised in Brooklyn and burdened with shocking secrets of their own, are reunited at the Springfield Armory at the beginning of World War Two. One sister lives in relative ease as an officer’s wife on the bucolic Armory Campus. The other sister shows up as a war widow and gets a job in the Armory factories as a “soldier of production”.

Resentment continues to fester between the pair, and secrets become shattered when a mysterious figure emerges from out of their past and into their lives again.

Loigman has penned a moving and powerful story with a strong voice and some artful prose. This is a gripping tale of betrayal and loyalty, as well as the consequences of long-buried secrets. It is interesting to see why the two sisters have such a fractured relationship. Each of these characters have been fully fleshed out, and you really get to know them well.

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