Under the Influence: A Novel

Paperback | November 22, 2016

byJoyce Maynard

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The New York Times bestselling author of Labor Day and After Her returns with a poignant story about the true meaning—and the true price—of friendship.

Drinking cost Helen her marriage and custody of her seven-year-old son, Ollie. Once an aspiring art photographer, she now makes ends meet taking portraits of school children and working for a caterer. Recovering from her addiction, she spends lonely evenings checking out profiles on an online dating site. Weekend visits with her son are awkward. He’s drifting away from her, fast.

When she meets Ava and Swift Havilland, the vulnerable Helen is instantly enchanted. Wealthy, connected philanthropists, they have their own charity devoted to rescuing dogs. Their home is filled with fabulous friends, edgy art, and dazzling parties.

Then Helen meets Elliott, a kind, quiet accountant who offers loyalty and love with none of her newfound friends’ fireworks. To Swift and Ava, he’s boring. But even worse than that, he’s unimpressed by them.

As Helen increasingly falls under the Havillands’ influence—running errands, doing random chores, questioning her relationship with Elliott—Ava and Swift hold out the most seductive gift: their influence and help to regain custody of her son. But the debt Helen owes them is about to come due.

Ollie witnesses an accident involving Swift, his grown son, and the daughter of the Havillands’ housekeeper. With her young son’s future in the balance, Helen must choose between the truth and the friends who have given her everything.

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From the Publisher

The New York Times bestselling author of Labor Day and After Her returns with a poignant story about the true meaning—and the true price—of friendship.Drinking cost Helen her marriage and custody of her seven-year-old son, Ollie. Once an aspiring art photographer, she now makes ends meet taking portraits of school children and working ...

From the Jacket

When Helen meets Swift and Ava Havilland at an art gallery opening, her life is at an all-time low. A DUI conviction caused her to lose her driver’s license and custody of her eight-year-old son, Oliver. Now she sees Ollie on Saturdays, but he hasn’t forgiven his mother for messing up their life. She’s got a dead-end job and goes on oc...

Joyce Maynard was born on November 5, 1953. She first came to national attention in 1973 with the publication of her New York Times cover story An Eighteen-Year-Old Looks Back on Life, which she wrote while a freshman at Yale University. Since then, she has been a reporter and columnist for The New York Times, a syndicated newspaper co...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:352 pages, 8 × 5.31 × 0.79 inPublished:November 22, 2016Publisher:HarperCollinsLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0062257684

ISBN - 13:9780062257680

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“It’s a story about the pull of consuming friendships, of seeking to escape into the lives of others, of possession and illusion — and you will not be able to put it down until Maynard herself releases you. Utterly captivating.”