The Novel Cure: Susan Elderkin and Noreen Tomassi

Thursday September 26, 2013
07:00 pm

Tags: Event



The Novel Cure - Part 2




Center for Fiction Executive Director and creator of The Center's A Novel Approach program Noreen Tomassi will be joined by Susan Elderkin, co-author of The Novel Cure (written with Ella Berthoud) to discuss the art of bibliotherapy. 


Find out more about A Novel Approach here. 


About The Novel Cure

Suffering from abandonment issues? Has adolescence (or an adolescent) got you down? Is your patience being tested? Or are you simply having a hard time adjusting to change? The cures for all of the above and more can be found between the pages of this book and, unlike most prescriptions, require no trips to the store

for refills and will not cause harm to your liver (unless of course you suffer from Addiction Issues: See alcoholism).


In The Novel Cure: From Abandonment to Zestlessness: 751 Books to Cure What Ails You authors and bibliotherapists Ella Berthoud and Susan Elderkin present a

witty and irresistible A-Z of literary remedies that recommend works of classic and contemporary fiction as cures for ailments of the mind and body.


To create this apothecary, Berthoud and Elderkim have searched through 2,000 years of literature for the most brilliant and engrossing reads. Structured like a reference book, readers simply look up their ailment and are given the recommended novels to read as the antidote. Suffering from anxiety? Pick up The Book of Disquiet by Fernando Pessoa. A broken leg? Get Johanna Spyri’s Heidi. Had a falling out with your best friend? Try William Maxwell’s So Long, See You Tomorrow.


Whatever your condition, the prescription is simple: a novel (or two), read at regular intervals until you finish. Some treatments will lead to a complete cure. Others will simply offer solace, showing you that you are not alone in your feelings. The Novel Cure is also peppered with useful lists and sidebars recommending the best post-breakup books, the top ten books to read in your twenties, the best novels on motherhood, and many more.


Brilliant in concept and deeply satisfying in execution, The Novel Cure belongs on everyone’s bookshelf. It will make even the most well-read aficionados rethink their favorites and perhaps reach for something new.  


Susan Elderkin and Ella Berthoud started giving novels to each other when they met as English students at Cambridge twenty-five years ago. A novelist, travel writer, writing teacher, and fiction reviewer for the Financial Times, Elderkin now

lives in Connecticut with her husband and son. Berthoud lives in Sussex with her husband and three girls and paints in a hut in her back garden. They have run a bibliotherapy service out of The School of Life in London since 2008, prescribing

books to clients all around the world.


Noreen Tomassi became Director of The Center for Fiction in December 2004. She came to the Center from Arts International. Prior to that she directed the Literature and Theater programs at NJSCA and she began her career in Play Development at McCarter Theatre in Princeton. Her books include American Visions/Visiones de las Americas: Artistic & Cultural Identity in the Americas and she was co-creator, with Jane Alexander and Birgitta Trommler, of What of the Night, a play based on the life and work of Djuna Barnes that was premiered by MCC at the Lucille Lortel in 2005. She earned her BA at Skidmore College.