Ariella Papa’s Holiday Gift Suggestion

It had been a while since I’d heard from Ariella Papa, who I first met a few years back when she was part of Harlequin’s band of “chick lit” novelists publishing under the Red Dress Ink imprint, when I ran into her at the Little Women horror mashup reading last spring, but I’m glad she’s stayed in touch since. She’s just come out with a new novel called Momfriends, about a trio of New York City women, each coping with a unique set of parenting and relationship diificulties—and it’s great to see she hasn’t lost her knack for getting inside a character’s head. Like many authors these days, she’s selling this new novel exclusively as an e-book; you can learn more about it (and her earlier books!) by visiting her website. Meanwhile, if you’re still looking for a gift idea for somebody this week, Ariella’s got a great suggestion…


When I give someone a book as a gift I want it to be a transformative experience that in no way resembles their real life. I don’t want the recipient to feel I am trying to imply anything or impose my style on them. I just want to give a good read, baggage free. The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver works for everyone from my babysitter to my oldest friend to my brother-in-law. This book is epic. Through emotional turmoil and political unrest, we follow the Price family for over thirty years starting in 1959 when they begin their Christian mission in the Belgian Congo. What I love most is the way the novel is narrated by the five women in the family. Kingsolver creates five distinct characters and lets these strong -somewhat flawed-people make a case for themselves and their actions. Each woman has a unique response to Africa and her situation. I am in awe of Kingsolver’s mastery of voice. I was inspired by her style. It’s a crowd pleaser.

20 December 2010 | gift ideas |