I have been a fan of Sue Miller since her first novel, THE GOOD MOTHER. Her newest novel, THE LAKE SHORE LIMITED, is original and transformative. It is a novel within novels, a story of a play that tells the story of this novel alongside the main narratives of the characters as they unfold.
The novel is told from the vantage points of four characters: Billy, Rafe, Leslie, and Sam. Each of them is connected by at least one degree of separation from each other. Billy is a playwright who has written a play about a terrorist bombing of a railroad. In real life, she has lost her lover, Gus, to the tragedies of 9/11. As we read this book, we are gradually allowed to see how much of her play is truly about her as well as her many personal aspects of self. Like all of us, Billy uses “masks” to protect her privacy. Her work as a playwright gives her additional means and artistic license within which to conceal or expose herself.