If you follow our Instagram account then you know that Kirsten and I are alike in many ways but, there is one way in which we are really different. I have no qualms about introducing myself to anyone, especially if that someone happens to be talking about books. That was the case with Elisabeth Cohen. I happened to overhear her mention “my book” which immediately perked my interest.
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It turns out this book was one we had our eye on. The Glitch is a hilarious and quirky debut novel. And Elisabeth will be doing an event on Thursday, June 28 at 7 pm at Main Point Books in Wayne. The event will be in conjunction with Jane Delury whose book The Balcony came out a few months ago. They will be chatting and reading from their respective books. Coincidentally, these two talented authors are old friends. We were lucky enough to have Elisabeth answer some questions for us.
Current Hometown: Bala Cynwyd
What is the last book you read? Lolita. The last time I read it I was closer to Lolita’s age and now I’m closer to Humbert’s. I thought I might dislike it now, but I didn’t.
What are some of your favorite reads? I like Penelope Fitzgerald, almost all of Jane Gardam’s books (especially Old Filth), Kate Atkinson’s mysteries (Started Early, Took My Dog), and Pat Barker’s Regeneration Trilogy. I especially love funny books, like Love, Nina (Nina Stibbe).
Where is your favorite place to read? On vacation, with a view.
What’s on your nightstand? Just books, a little pile. The Balcony, by my grad school friend Jane Delury, and Epic City, by my college classmate Kushanava Choudhury. A David Sedaris book. A bookmark listing a bookstore’s “Favorite Novels of the Past 200 Years” (Maybe I’ll read them all.)
Where did you go to High School? Emmaus High School, in Emmaus, PA
What was your favorite High School required read? My English teacher Mr. Serensits had us spend many weeks on The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock and lines from it come back to me all the time. When I cut up a peach for my kids I hear, “Do I dare to eat a peach?/I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach/I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each.” My kids look bewildered when I say this.
What is your favorite restaurant in Philly? Amada is where we used to go when our kids were little, on the exciting nights when we had a sitter. I would like to go back to Zahav if we ever plan ahead and get a reservation. My favorite neighborhood place is Coco Thai in Narberth.
What is your favorite hidden gem in Philly? Bartram’s Garden
What is your favorite childhood memory about this area? Even though I didn’t grow up here, I had grandparents in Cheltenham, and I have good memories of the Franklin Institute planetarium and the Rodin Museum.
What is your ideal Sunday Funday? Coffee, time to write, a barre class, a hike with the family on the Wisshickon or the Cynwyd trail.
What do you love most about the Mainline/Philly? I love the lushness–the trees and greenery, the beautiful stone houses, the sense of history, the way it’s like living in a small town. It’s June and the flowers are blooming, and when I’m walking around now I think, this is perfect.
What is your favorite bookstore in Philly? The Narberth Bookshop, where I had my book launch! It’s such a great store. We’re lucky to have so many good ones.
Name 5 things you can’t live without: I would survive, but way less happily, without:
- My kids and my husband
- To a lesser extent, our dog
- Warm weather and sun