Labor Day

Labor Day

By Joyce Maynard

Harper Perennial, Paperback, 9780061843419, 244pp.

Publication Date: August 2010


With the end of summer closing in and a steamy Labor Day weekend looming in the town of Holton Mills, New Hampshire, lonely, friendless thirteen-year-old Henry spends most of his time watching television, reading, and daydreaming with only his emotionally fragile, long-divorced mother for company. But everything changes on the Thursday before the holiday weekend when a mysterious bleeding man named Frank asks Henry for a hand. Over the next five days, Henry will learn some of life's most valuable lessons, about the breathless pain of jealousy, the power of betrayal, and the importance of putting those we care about above ourselves--and that real love is worth waiting for.

From acclaimed author Joyce Maynard comes a beautiful, poignant tale of love, sex, adolescence, and devastating treachery as seen through the eyes of a young teenager--and the man he later becomes.

About the Author
Joyce Maynard was born and raised in New Hampshire. She is the author of several books, including "To Die For, Where Love Goes, Domestic Affairs, Baby Talk", and her memoir "Looking Back", which she wrote at the age of eighteen. Joyce Maynard has written for many national publications, including" The New York Times Magazine, Parenting" and "Good Housekeeping". She lives in Mill Valley, California, with her three children.

Praise For Labor Day

“Joyce Maynard is in top-notch form with Labor Day. From the perfect pitch of a teenaged boy narrator to the eloquent message of how loneliness can bind people together, this is simply a novel you cannot miss.”
-Jodi Picoult, New York Times bestselling author of My Sister's Keeper and Handle With Care

“[The] story is moving and fast-moving, affirming Maynard’s reputation as a master storyteller and showing her to be a passionate humanist with a gifted ear and heart. . . . Maynard illuminates the human experience.”
-People (Four Stars)

“Maynard expertly tugs heartstrings in a tidy tale. ”
-Kirkus Reviews

“Maynard’s inventive coming-of-age tale indelibly captures the anxiety and confusion inherent in adolescence, while the addition of a menacing element of suspense makes this emotionally fraught journey that much more harrowing.”

“Maynard is in top form in this tale of love, betrayal, and forgiveness.”
-Associated Press

“Maynard deftly pulls the reader into the fragile lives of these three vulnerable characters and their preordained march toward the novel’s denouement. A marvelous read––perfect for one long sitting––this novel leaves the reader wishing it didn’t ever have to end.”

“ in top form in this tale of love, betrayal and forgiveness.”
-Record Searchlight (Redding, CA)

“beautifully written”
-New Orleans Times-Picayune

“Maynard offers fresh insight into what constitutes family.”
-USA Today

“It is a testament to Maynard’s skill that she makes this ominous setup into a convincing and poignant coming-of-age tale.”
-Washington Post

“Maynard details Henry’s roller-coaster emotions for Frank – he is both jealous and grateful – and his mother’s emotional journeys – with skill and tenderness for the uncertain willingness of broken hearts to mend. The poignant results are revealing of our ability to forgive and to grow.”
-Smart Money

Labor Day is suffused with tenderness, dreaminess and love....first and foremost a page-turner...[it] puts back together the world that it definitely need to get a box of tissues.”

“a haunting and hopeful story”
-Hartford Courant

“[A] sweet, swift read that will leave you feeling good.”
-Minneapolis Star Tribune

“surprisingly moving”
-Arizona Republic

“The novel is an extended meditation on the nature of love, grief and loneliness.... Maynard has created an ensemble of characters that will sneak into your heart, and warm it while it breaks. ”
-St. Petersburg Times

“Maynard gets inside the head of an adolescent boy who is grappling with his own identity and the mysteries of sex (while revealing the secrets of making perfect pie crust). ”
-Salt Lake City Tribune

“Maynard spins a fascinating story of damaged people seeking the one thing they long for – love. ”
-Wichita Falls, TX, Times Record News

“Labor Day is a startling novel of love, friendship, trust, treachery, betrayal, and the deep lessons that we learn in life.... It’s a powerful, poignant mix in the hands of author Joyce Maynard and a novel no one should miss.”

“Labor Day is both a coming-of-age story and a love story- a tale of profound loss, redemption and soul searching that is not to be missed.”

“Maynard has created an ensemble of characters that will sneak into your heart, and warm it while it breaks.”
-St. Petersburg Times

“But apart from being a successful thriller, this book is a fascinating portrait of what causes a family to founder, and how much it can cost to put it back on the right path. ”

“At once beautiful and disturbing, this remarkable novel…is a moving read.” on LABOR DAY

“an uplifting story told by a boy who is just beginning to understand what life is all about.”
-St. Petersburg Times