Valencia and Valentine
VALENCIA DOESN'T THINK ABOUT DEATH TOO MUCH—IF ANYTHING, NO ONE ELSE THINKS ABOUT IT ENOUGH.
When Valencia’s therapist challenges her to take a flight on her thirty-fifth birthday, she's at a loss for where to go—until she falls in love with a man over the phone at the debt collection center where she works. The problem is, she’s not entirely sure the man exists...and she’s deathly afraid of getting on an airplane.
Mrs. Valentine isn’t afraid to fly—she’s been everywhere there is to go. And on one of those trips, her own worst fear came true: she lost the love of her life.
The only thing Valencia and Mrs. Valentine have in common is death—one fears it, one has made peace with it. But maybe they both still have a thing or two to learn about it...
“Despite themes of loneliness, loss, and mental illness, Krause manages to infuse her tale with charm and gentle humor.” —Booklist
There’s a difference between being alive and living. This is a story about living.
When it comes to fiction, the first thing to win me over is the author’s voice—the feeling that it almost doesn’t matter what’s happening in the story itself because the way in which it’s being told is so utterly captivating. Debut novelist Suzy Krause has one of those rare voices that completely sucked me in from page one—both humorous and serious, lighthearted and thoughtful, smart and accessible.
Even better, Krause’s characters are equally as charming as her voice is. I found myself enraptured by Valencia’s resilience and wholeheartedly rooting for her to realize that she is worthy and deserving of happiness. And I was completely enchanted by Mrs. Valentine’s eccentricity and vibrant sense of life (despite her being near the end of it).
For fans of Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine and A Man Called Ove, this quirky novel is almost certain to deeply resonate with readers around the world. With the perfect blend of humor and heart, Krause expertly explores themes of mental health, aging, guilt, forgiveness, adventure, love, and second chances. And with a twist I didn’t see coming, the ending left me reaching for the tissue box, smiling through my tears.
Valencia and Valentine is a beautiful reminder that despite the bad things that can happen in life, there is still love and hope and laughter to be found in the world. This special novel made me realize that it’s not enough to merely be alive—I want to truly live.
- Alicia Clancy, Editor, Lake Union Publishing