Cover image for You could be home by now
You could be home by now
Manaster, Tracy.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Blue Ash, OH : Tyrus Books [2014]
Physical Description:
287 pages ; 23 cm
"Two young professionals working in a retirement community discover that one of their residents is hiding her grandson in her unit. Word spreads quickly, and in the midst of their own personal struggles, they must find the best solution for this problem" --
Format :


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FICTION Adult Fiction Central Library
FICTION Adult Fiction Open Shelf
FICTION Adult Fiction Open Shelf
FICTION Adult Fiction Open Shelf

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An hour and a half outside Tucson, Arizona, The Commons is a luxury retirement community where no full-time resident under the age of fifty-five is permitted. Young professionals Seth and Alison Collier accept jobs there as a means of dealing (badly) with a recent loss. When a struggling resident, underwater on her mortgage and unable to relocate due to the nation's ongoing housing crisis, is discovered to be raising her grandson in secret, the story--with the help of a well-meaning teenaged beauty blogger and a retiree with reasons of his own to seek the spotlight--goes viral. You Could Be Home By Now explores the fallout for all involved, taking on the themes of grief and memory, aspiration and social class, self-deception, and the drive in all of us to find a place to belong.

Author Notes

Tracy Manaster is a graduate of Wesleyan University and The Iowa Writers' Workshop. She was the 2006 recipient of the National League of American Pen Women's Joanna Catherine Scott prize for novel excerpt. Her nonfiction has appeared in iAgora and Moxie magazines and as interactive exhibit texts for the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of American History. She lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband and twin daughters.

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

Manaster's debut novel revolves around Seth and Alison Collier, young teachers whose newborn dies. Seeking a change of pace, they uproot from their Vermont home and move to Arizona. They take over roles at a retirement community, the Commons, where no residents under 55 are permitted, and soon they drift apart as they deal with their grief. Other residents have their own trials to face. Sadie, a recent widow, is visited by her teenage granddaughter, Lily, a disgraced blogger. When Lily saves the life of a young boy who secretly lives next door with his grandmother, Mona, his unlawful residence comes to light, making Mona eligible for eviction. However, Mona can't afford to leave her home because of the housing market. Complicating matters further are the antics of the recently divorced neighbor Ben, who acts out on television to call attention to his own plight: a long-missing daughter. Manaster weaves these disparate tales of strife and grief eloquently, impressively depicting an adolescent girl and an aging man with equal fullness and depth. She also resists the urge for easy resolution, denying her readers the simple feel-good solutions and instead offering small amounts of emotional satisfaction that feel realistic and earned. (Dec.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Library Journal Review

Seth and Alison are a couple with a recent devastating loss, adrift in their marriage. Lily is a teen-blogging sensation, doling out fashion and beauty tips until a scandal shuts her website down and she is sent to stay with her widowed grandmother. Ben is dealing badly with both the longtime loss of his daughter and the breakup of his marriage. All of these characters converge in the Commons, an upscale retirement community in southern Arizona created strictly for the over-55 crowd. When Lily inadvertently uncovers a neighbor's housing infraction, the community's chain-reaction responses expose the innumerable ways in which we suffer, survive, hold fast to what is most dear, and protect what we love. VERDICT Manaster's debut is an adventurous undertaking, both light and insightful. The wide range of characters (teen, young couple, retiree) is well depicted and appealing. For fans of realistically written, flawed-human narratives with a flair for fun. Julie Kane, Sweet Briar Coll. Lib., VA (c) Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.