Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Cutting Teeth - A Shout Out

Cutting TeethOne sweltering late-summer weekend, a group of thirty-something Brooklyn parents and their children gathers at a shabby beach house on Long Island. A rusted sign welcomes them to “Eden,” but their trip is a far cry from paradise. For two days, each parent will wrestle with secrets he or she can no longer ignore against the chaotic backdrop of five young children’s relentless demands.  Julia Fierro’s debut novel, CUTTING TEETH (July 7, 2015; St. Martin’s Griffin),now in paperback delivers razor-sharp commentary on the precariously comfortable lives of a tight knit Park Slope playgroup.

Nicole, the hostess, struggles to keep her OCD behaviors unnoticed. Stay-at-home dad Rip grapples with the reality that his careerist wife will likely deny him a second child, forcing him to disrupt the life he loves. Allie, one half of a two-mom family, can't stop imagining ditching her wife and kids in favor of her art. Tiffany, comfortable with her amazing body but not so comfortable in the upper-middle class world the other characters were born into, flirts dangerously, and spars with her best friend Leigh, a blue blood secretly facing financial ruin and dependent on the magical Tibetan nanny everyone else covets. Throughout the weekend, conflicts intensify and painful truths surface. Friendships and alliances crack, forcing the house party to confront a new order.

Cutting Teeth is about the complex dilemmas of early midlife--the vicissitudes of friendship, of romantic and familial love, and of sex. It's about class tension, status hunger, and the unease of being in possession of life's greatest bounty while still wondering, is this as good as it gets? And, perhaps most of all, Julia Fierro's warm and unpretentious debut explores the all-consuming love we feel for those we need most, and the sacrifice and compromise that underpins that love.

As a mother of two adorable children, Julia has firsthand experience in parenting circles in Brooklyn. She runs a tumblr called Parenting Confessional where parents (and nannies!) post the thoughts they cannot speak out loud. She also wrote an essay on the Huffington Post about a time a photo of her daughter went viral.