Dennis Lehane's second pick for his eponymous print is Visitation Street, by Ivy Pochoda.
Ivy Pochoda’s Visitation Street is a riveting literary mystery set against the rough-hewn backdrop of the New York waterfront in Red Hook.
It’s summertime in Red Hook, Brooklyn, a blue-collar dockside neighborhood. June and Val, two fifteen-year-olds, take a raft out onto the bay at night to see what they can see.
And then they disappear. Only Val will survive, washed ashore; semi-conscious in the weeds.
This shocking event will echo through the lives of a diverse cast of Red Hook residents. Fadi, the Lebanese bodega owner, hopes that his shop will be the place to share neighborhood news and troll for information about June’s disappearance. Cree, just beginning to pull it together after his father’s murder, unwittingly makes himself the chief suspect, but an enigmatic and elusive guardian is determined to keep him safe.
Val contends with the shadow of her missing friend and a truth she buries deep inside. Her teacher Jonathan, a Julliard School dropout and barfly, wrestles with dashed dreams and a past riddled with tragic sins.
Read the LA Times interview with author Ivy Pochoda.
Attica Locke’s THE CUTTING SEASON is the first book chosen by Dennis Lehane for his HarperCollins imprint.
From Janet Maslin’s The New York Times book review: “...it’s easy to see why Mr. Lehane selected it. Ms. Locke writes about Southern racial and class nuances in much the same way that Mr. Lehane sees those forces at work in Boston. Both authors specialize in apparently civilized settings where long-buried discord is always poised to erupt, usually with lethal consequences. Each is willing to use the murder mystery as a framework for much more ambitious, atmospheric fiction.”