Emily Giffin is a novelist with a string of bestsellers she aims to continue in her ninth book, “All We Ever Wanted.” She’s also a Buckhead resident whose love of her city has helped to inform her books.
“Atlanta is such a diverse, beautiful city, but there is no more beautiful part than Buckhead,” Giffin said in an email interview.
Giffin will appear June 28 at the Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta in Dunwoody in support of her new book, “All We Ever Wanted.”
Her first novel, “Something Borrowed” was adapted for a 2011 movie starring Kate Hudson, Ginnifer Godwin and John Krasinski. She lives in Buckhead near Pace Academy, the school her children attend.
The local book launch party will be held Thursday, June 28, 7:30-9 p.m. at the MJCCA, 5324 Tilly Mill Road, Dunwoody. Tickets are $30 to $35. For more information, see atlantajcc.org/bookfestival.
In the following Q&A, Giffin answered the Reporter’s questions about Atlanta, writing and more.
Q: Do any of your books have references to Atlanta or inspired by places you go here?
A: I’ve set two books in Atlanta, including my novel before this release, “First Comes Love.” I’m so proud of this diverse, vibrant city and think it makes a fabulous backdrop for my character-driven and relationship-rich stories.
Q: How is this book different from your previous novels?
A: This is the first book I’ve written that includes a male perspective, and the first time I’ve written from three different points of view. It’s also the first time I’ve really tackled issues of social class, white privilege and entitlement.
Q: A review of “All We Ever Wanted” said the book is timely given the #MeToo movement. Were you inspired by that movement for this book?
A: Interestingly, the #MeToo movement didn’t begin until I was mostly finished writing the novel. So in a sense, it was one of those “life imitating art” situations. And while the movement itself didn’t directly influence the book, I definitely wanted to tell a story that focused on women learning to seize control of their lives and, more pointedly, fighting back against having our voices and our concerns minimized. In other words, I am certainly aware of the sexism, and sometimes outright misogyny, in our society, and I think some of these concerns shaped the story, particularly the story arcs for the two main female narrators, Nina and Lyla.
Q: What was it like to have a novel made into a movie?
A: It was surreal and so much fun. I’m also really thrilled to announce that I’m developing a TV series with Black Label Media, the same producer who worked on the film “Something Borrowed.”
Q: What are your favorite bookstores?
A: In Buckhead, I usually go to my local Barnes & Noble, though there are so many great stores in the Atlanta area: A Capella Books (I love Frank Reiss, the owner) and Posman Books in Ponce City Market are two favorites. In the metro Atlanta area, I also love Eagle Eye Books in Decatur, FoxTale Book Shoppe in Woodstock, and Avid Bookshop in Athens.
Q: Are you friends with any other Atlanta authors?
A: I absolutely adore fellow Wake Forest alum Kate T. Parker (“Strong is the New Pretty”). I’m also friends with novelists Susan Rebecca White, Colleen Oakley, Mary Kay Andrews and Patti Callahan Henry (though sadly for Atlanta, Patti relocated to Birmingham).
Q: What was the first book you remember reading that had a profound effect on you?
A: Goodness, there are just so many. Too many to name. But I read Carson McCuller’s “A Member of the Wedding” in high school and it really changed and inspired me. I can still conjure all of the intense feelings that story awoke in me.
Q: How has your writing evolved since you first began your career?
A: I like to think that my writing continues to improve with every novel. I think the issues in my book have also evolved, which isn’t surprising given that I was 29, single and childless when I wrote my first novel. I’m now 46, married withs three children (two of them teens). The stakes in life have become much greater for both me and my characters.