Kitty Haskell has everything – a perfect house in the perfect neighborhood, a handsome husband, charming children, and a nasty case of gonorrhea. Rather than dealing with her cheating husband, Kitty worries the exclusive clique of Overlook moms will find out. Unfortunately, The Lookers seem to already know everything, about everyone.
Set against the backdrop of the bicentennial, this snarky novel peeks behind the custom curtains and pristine lawns to expose the grubby underbelly of suburbia to ask – how far will a woman go to protect what she loves?
Praise for Overlook
“Elizabeth Hein’s OVERLOOK is a hilarious debut novel, a cross between Desperate Housewives, Devious Maids, and Mistresses—as the dirty secrets of this southern North Carolina suburban neighborhood are deliciously exposed.
Having recently read an ARC of Hein’s upcoming “How to Climb the Eiffel Tower”, coming Oct 1, 2014 (a must 5 star read, highly recommend), I fell in love with the author’s razor sharp wit, and immediately purchased OVERLOOK.
In the fictitious town of Magnuson, NC in the seventies—Overlook is a lakeside pristine upper-end three-hundred home community, a country club setting of swim, tennis, golf, boating with a mixture of families—busy wives and mothers, gossip, nosy maids, homemakers, career women, gardening, clubs, runners, cyclists, swimmers, joggers, young children and teens, cheating husbands, food binges, Lily Pulitzer dresses, Krispy Kreme donuts, fried chicken, bake sales, wine drinkers, cocktails, drugs, PTA, real estate agents, mistresses, and those nearing empty nester status. (The Overlook moms are otherwise known as The Lookers if you are a part of Stacia’s inter-circle).
Of course, behind every southern upper crust family, there is greed, backstabbing, betrayal, jealousy, revenge, infidelity, drugs, cover up, disloyalty, hate, and hypocrisy.
Kitty, age 43, is married to Seth, VP of a Golf company (a marriage out of a pregnancy years ago), basically going through the motions. Mother of two, Bobby and Becky, and a busy homemaker (later in the book a career mom) and a cool sister, Rose.
Seth has never been faithful; however, Kitty has looked the other way, doing her own thing, until she finds herself with STD (gonorrhea). It does not take long for this small community of women to spread the word of this nasty little development. (Loved “hope your pecker falls off” and “it’s kinda like screwing a skeleton”).
Her friend Stacia Tate, influential Tate family (inter-racial) married to the real estate developer (Curran Construction) for the prestigious community, has a thumb on everything and everyone in Overlook. After all, it was her family who developed this oasis which is now Overlook.
Partners in crime, these two tackle all the challenges of motherhood and their wifely duties, while keeping one step ahead of the gossip. A comic Southern novel about all the important things in life: marriage and divorce, friendship and betrayal, and small-town secrets.
Full of laughs, with true-to-life characters, and hilarious one liners which will keep you laughing out loud as these southern belles find themselves in all sorts of mischief.
Hein reminds me of a cross between sassy Southern writer, Mary Kay Andrews, Susan Rebecca White, Emily Giffin, and sarcastic and witty, Jennifer Weiner.
OVERLOOK is an engaging and scandalous comedy-drama chick-lit, filled with humor and sass, and a juicy sequel ESCAPE PLAN, coming (Fall, 2014), after the surprise and shocking ending.
How far will these women go to protect those she loves? Looking forward to catching up with these savvy southern mysterious and desperate housewives of Overlook.” – Judith Collins
“Like the cover photo, the surface of Overlook appears perfect. But dark, turbulent waters lie underneath. Kudos to Hein for daring to explore a truth few of us care to admit: Life for affluent, suburban women really hasn’t changed all that much since our mothers’ times. A thought-provoking portrait of a closed community that could be anywhere USA.”
“Engrossing characters, many of whom I want to know more about, and interesting action with some twists (especially the surprise ending!). The … description led me to expect stereotypes and a sort of chick lit fluffiness; that was not the case. The characters were complex and the story lines were unpredictable. I was sorry to see the book end! I hope we will see more from the inhabitants of Overlook in the future!”
“The women of Overlook, a small lakeside community, are more than meets the eye. They have secrets, desires, and ambitions that are neatly hidden behind their superficially perfect lives. Hein has expertly fleshed out these women creating engaging characters that feel as real our own friends. A truly compelling and wonderful book!”
“Overlook is an insider’s view of the interrelated lives of women in an upscale housing development. The characters are unique but recognizable, their relationships complicated but understandable. Elizabeth Hein is a remarkable new author, adept at dissecting marriages and female idiosyncrasies with honesty. Her characters are alternately snarky, funny, venal and empathetic, and the book is full of unexpected twists and outright surprises. A great read – better than an Oprah Book Club selection!”
“In her edgy debut novel, Elizabeth Hein exposes the dark underbelly of suburban life. I enjoyed this well-written exploration into the back-biting, gossip-laden world of the elite southern neighborhood of Overlook, inhabited by women and men whose secrets are traded as currency. And soon we realize that there are very few secrets in Overlook. The story revolves around two women – Stacia and Kitty. Stacia is the machiavellian and dominant PTA president/queen attempting to control the intimate inner workings of her beloved community, with a varying, and sometimes questionable degree of success. Mild-mannered, intellectual homemaker, Kitty, is slowly waking up to the reality of her life; examining her own blind complacency in the context of a bombed out shell of a marriage. Both women grapple with the emotional difficulties that come along with aging children and empty nests while pondering their respective futures and finding a way to go forward with their lives. For better or worse.”