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Synopsis

Former child prodigy and rich-girl kleptomaniac, Ester-renamed into the gentile Carleen for her own protection-is incarcerated after a botched heist. For two decades, time is the enemy. Her twenties and thirties crawl by in stifling isolation. When finally let loose onto the streets of New York, she finds a job wrestling spoiled canines as a dog walker in Manhattan's most elite neighborhoods, relating better with their brutish instincts than with their human owners. Determined to also prove herself a real person, Carleen tries to reconnect with her estranged and ferociously Orthodox daughter.

Amid the strained brunch dates, unsent letters, and the continuing trauma of prison, Carleen begins a slow and halting process of self-discovery. Strikingly funny and self aware, this belated coming-of-age novel asks the question: How do you restart after crashing your first chance at life?

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