By Emily Gray Tedrowe
(Harper Perennial, Paperback, 9780061859472, 400pp.)

Publication Date: July 2010

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Selected by Indie Booksellers for the August 2010 Indie Notables
“The whirlwind romance and marriage between Winnie, 78, and wealthy businessman Jerry, 85, promises a happy future but immediately upsets family dynamics. Jerry's resentful daughter views Winnie as a gold-digging usurper, while Winnie's daughter, beset by financial problems brought on by her husband's brain injury, is difficult in her own right. Their stories are interwoven with a deft hand and portrayed with both wit and compassion.”
-- Ellen Sandmeyer, Sandmeyer's Bookstore, Chicago, IL
Selected by Indie Booksellers for the Summer 2012 Reading Group


At seventy-eight, Winnie Easton has finally found love again with Jerry Trevis, a wealthy Chicago businessman who has moved to the small, upstate town of Hartfield, New York, to begin his life anew. But their decision to buy one of the town's biggest houses ignites anger and skepticism—as children and grandchildren take drastic actions to secure their own futures and endangered inheritances. With so much riding on Jerry's wealth, a decline in his physical health forces hard decisions on the family, renewing old loyalties while creating surprising alliances.

A powerfully moving novel told from alternating perspectives, Commuters is an intensely human story of lives profoundly changed by the repercussions of one marriage, and by the complex intertwining of love, money, and family.

About the Author

Emily Gray Tedrowe lives in Chicago with her husband and two daughters. Her short fiction has appeared in Other Voices and the Crab Orchard Review. Commuters is her first novel.

Conversation Starters from


  1. How does the title Commuters reflect the novel?  What are the different meanings of this title for each of its main characters—Winnie, Rachel, and Avery? 

Praise For Commuters

“In her wonderfully cohesive debut novel, short-story writer Tedrowe graduates to elegant novelist. . . . A lovely and literate family drama that wins bonus points for its sincerity and open-hearted delivery.”
-Kirkus Reviews

“So fantastic. This is the kind of book you would imagine Virginia Woolf might write were she with us is the 21st century: relevant and contemporary, relentlessly funny, deeply insightful, and fearless in its exploration of people’s private lives.”
-Patrick Somerville, author of The Cradle

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