I spoke to two wise, passionate book clubs in Maryland, one of which basically runs the city of Baltimore, the other of which (my mother-in-law's) has been meeting regularly for 25 years. I read alongside a brilliant novelist, fellow DC native Elliott Holt, at The Writer's Center in Bethesda, the same Writer's Center where I spent my college summers, registering people for workshops and aspiring to be a writer myself. And I had a great discussion with Rebecca Wiegand Coale of The Gaggle about The Violet Hour, 19th-century novels, and the Millennial generation.
I also got some pretty amazing reviews. "A gripping debut," said PEOPLE Magazine. "Wonderfully witty," said Elisabeth Egan in the Washington Post, who may have loved the book even more than me. "The Violet Hour may not be an ode to 'the unfashionable wilds of suburban Washington,' but it is a rewarding family saga reminiscent of Anne Tyler’s novels circa Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant . . . Thanks to Hill’s assured voice, the Fabricants’ occasional flashes of harmony and humor will leave you with the charmed feeling of having seen a rainbow over the Beltway."
Seriously. It doesn't get much better than that.