Jeanne McWilliams Blasberg

Literary
Women’s Fiction

Her novels explore the complex relationships between mothers and their children and the drama that arises when societal pressure conflicts with maternal instinct.

Jeanne Blasberg is the author of Eden, the winner of the Beverly Hills Book Awards for Women’s Fiction, and finalist for the Benjamin Franklin Award for Best New Voice in Fiction, and Sarton Women’s Book Award for Historical Fiction. Eden was released in May 2017 by She Writes Press.

After graduating from Smith College, Jeanne embarked on a career in finance. Even as she worked primarily with numbers, she always had an interest in writing. She made stops on Wall Street, Macy’s, and wrote case studies at Harvard Business School before turning seriously to fiction. She has kept a journal throughout her life, taking inspiration from them to pen her first novel, Eden.

Jeanne is a board member of the Boston Book Festival. She is a student and board member of Grub Street, one of the country’s pre-eminent creative writing centers where she wrote and revised her second novel, The Nine, to be released by She Writes Press in August 2019.

Jeanne and her husband have three grown children and split their time between Boston, MA and Westerly, RI. They love to travel, hike, ski, and spend time on the water.

Read BookTrib’s review of Jeanne’s book, The Nine.

For more on Jeanne, please visit her website.

BOOKS:

Eden (2017)

The Nine (2019)

Biggest literary influencers:

John Irving

Mary Karr

Barbara Kingsolver

Joyce Carol Oates

Elizabeth Strout

Last book read:

Between You and Me: Confessions of a Comma Queen by Mary Norris

The book that changed your life:

The Liar’s Club: A Memoir by Mary Karr would have to be the book that changed my perception about what was off limits to write about. The answer is: nothing is out of bounds as long as you do it well, with grace and compassion.

Your favorite literary character:

My favorite character is Olive Kitteredge. She is human, imperfect and unlikeable most of the time. Seeing the many facets of Olive’s life through different characters’ points of view was delightful and inspiring. I attempted some of the same technique in Eden.

Currently working on:

My third novel, yet to be named, will connect the worlds I’ve created in Eden and The Nine. Set in New York City, it explores a young woman’s entry into an old-boy’s Wall Street investment bank.

Words to live by:

Aim for simplicity. Less is more.

Advice to new and aspiring authors:

Keep writing, have faith in the story that is burning inside you, and be willing to take feedback. Be patient with yourself and with your work, making art has never been an efficient undertaking.

Articles / Reviews:

https://www.kirkusreviews.com/book-reviews/jeanne-mcwilliams-blasberg/the-nineo/

https://www.theday.com/local-columns/20170727/ultimate-summer-book-set-in-fictional-watch-hill

https://www.improper.com/arts-culture/paradise-lost-and-found/

https://hankgarner.com/archive/mp3/authorstories476JeanneMcWilliamsBlasberg.mp3

Testimonials:

EDEN is not just another farewell-to-the-summer-house novel, but instead a masterfully interwoven family saga with indelible characters, unforgettable stories, and true pathos. Most impressive, there’s not an ounce of fat on this excellent book.
Anita Shreve, NYT best-selling author of The Pilot’s Wife and The Stars are Fire

— The Nine uncovers the underbelly of an elite private school, revealing decades-long corruption, while also exposing how the fervent dreams of mothers for their children can shatter families. Jeanne Blasberg delves with unflinching precision into the chasms between parents and children, a novel revelatory for the author’s willingness to scrutinize both mother and son and their stifling bond.
Randy Susan Meyers, bestselling author of The Widow of Wall Street and Waisted.

— The Nine is one of those suspenseful, highly addictive novels that keeps you saying, “just one more chapter” until suddenly you’ve stayed up all night to finish it. Hannah and Sam – the tenacious, devoted mother and her humble, endearing son – make an irresistible team as they take on the dark narcissism and systemic exploitation of an elite world that attempts to break them. I love this book’s iconoclastic impulse and its ultimate faith in the values of work over privilege, and love over loyalty.
Christopher Castellani, author of Leading Men