“A novel of huge heart and fierce intelligence. It has restored my faith in pretty much everything.” —Ann Patchett
I am a sucker for a coming of age novel and The Falconer has got to rank amongst one of the best I have ever read. Think The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach but with basketball instead of baseball and you still aren’t even halfway there! Set in New York in 1993 we follow 17-year-old Lucy Adler as she navigates life whilst trying to find her place in the world and the city. Lucy is carving out her identity and being true to it while at the same time she is exploring and examining her friendships and what each of them really mean.
Lucy is a wonderfully acerbic protagonist and a character I am never going to forget. She is a beautiful mix of contradictions. She is fierce yet vulnerable. She is insightful yet naive. She is confident and self-assured yet apprehensive and desperate for unrequited love to be returned. Lucy is all this and more all evocatively drawn by Dana Czapnik’s amazing writing.
From the opening sentences, as you meet Lucy playing basketball, you are hooked. The way Dana Czapnik describes the basketball in Lucy’s hands; it’s texture, it’s power, it’s meaning, will make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. But this is not a basketball novel. This is an ode to growing up and an ode to New York City. The vibrancy and turbulence of both. This is a book you won’t forget.