Random House: Bringing You the Best in Fiction, Nonfiction, and Children's Books
Authors
Books
Features
Newletters and Alerts

Buy now from Random House

  • Before Ever After
  • Written by Samantha Sotto
  • Format: Trade Paperback | ISBN: 9780307719881
  • Our Price: $13.00
  • Quantity:
See more online stores - Before Ever After

Buy now from Random House

  • Before Ever After
  • Written by Samantha Sotto
  • Format: Hardcover | ISBN: 9780307719874
  • Our Price: $23.00
  • Quantity:
See more online stores - Before Ever After

Buy now from Random House

  • Before Ever After
  • Written by Samantha Sotto
  • Format: eBook | ISBN: 9780307719898
  • Our Price: $9.99
  • Quantity:
See more online stores - Before Ever After

Before Ever After

    Select a Format:
  • Book
  • eBook

A Novel

Written by Samantha SottoAuthor Alerts:  Random House will alert you to new works by Samantha Sotto

eBook

List Price: $9.99

eBook

On Sale: August 02, 2011
Pages: 304 | ISBN: 978-0-307-71989-8
Published by : Crown Crown Trade Group
Before Ever After Cover

Bookmark,
Share & Shelve:

  • Add This - Before Ever After
  • Email this page - Before Ever After
  • Print this page - Before Ever After
ABOUT THE BOOK ABOUT THE BOOK
ABOUT THE AUTHOR ABOUT THE AUTHOR
PRAISE PRAISE
READER'S GUIDE READER'S GUIDE
Synopsis
> The Slight Detour
Related Links

Synopsis

"A smartly written romance, mystery and historical adventure all wrapped up in a page-turner that will have you guessing until the very end." – Adena Halpern, author of The Ten Best Days of My Life
 
Three years after her husband Max's death, Shelley feels no more adjusted to being a widow than she did that first terrible day. That is, until the doorbell rings. Standing on her front step is a young man who looks so much like Max–same smile, same eyes, same age, same adorable bump in his nose–he could be Max's long-lost relation. He introduces himself as Paolo, an Italian editor of American coffee table books, and shows Shelley some childhood photos. Paolo tells her that the man in the photos, the bearded man who Paolo says is his grandfather though he never seems to age, is Max. Her Max. And he is alive and well.
 
As outrageous as Paolo's claims seem–how could her husband be alive? And if he is, why hasn't he looked her up? – Shelley desperately wants to know the truth. She and Paolo jet across the globe to track Max down–if it is really Max– and along the way, Shelley recounts the European package tour where they had met. As she relives Max's stories of bloody Parisian barricades, medieval Austrian kitchens, and buried Roman boathouses, Shelley begins to piece together the story of who her husband was and what these new revelations mean for her "happily ever after." And as she and Paolo get closer to the truth, Shelley discovers that not all stories end where they are supposed to.
Samantha Sotto

About Samantha Sotto

Samantha Sotto - Before Ever After
SAMANTHA SOTTO fell in love with Europe’s cobbled streets and damp castles when she moved to the Netherlands as a teenager.  Since then, she has spent nights huddled next to her backpack on a Greek beach, honeymooned in Paris, and attended business meetings in Dusseldorf in the pleasant company of a corporate credit card. Before Ever After was inspired by her experiences living, studying, and traveling through Europe.  This is her first novel.


From the Hardcover edition.
Praise

Praise

 “I was floored by the gutsy scope of this highly unusual love story. Before Ever After is one of those books that challenges the natural laws of fiction writing, and Samantha Sotto pulls it off in a frisky and highly entertaining way.” – Anne Fortier, New York Times bestselling author of Juliet

“I was absolutely enchanted by Before Ever After. It's a highly original and engaging mix of romance, mystery and magic that will challenge everything you think you know about happily ever after.” Jill Smolinski, author of The Next Thing on My List
 
"A smartly written romance, mystery and historical adventure all wrapped up in a page-turner that will have you guessing until the very end." – Adena Halpern, author of The Ten Best Days of My Life
 
“Exquisitely written and inventively told, Before Ever After is a beautiful, moving—and quite fun—exploration of what you think you know about your own life.” –Melissa Senate, author of The Love Goddess’ Cooking School
 
"In Samantha Sotto's high spirited debut, a young widow travels to a remote and distant island to answer the question, what price do we pay for eternal love. It is a mesmerizing journey transcending time and continents, all to remind that there are many ways to live on forever and to immortalize a marriage. Note to readers: Curl up with jasmine tea and savor the warm, rich writing, as delectable as the recipes for love found within every enchanting page."  -Saralee Rosenberg, author of Claire Voyant




From the Hardcover edition.
Reader's Guide

About the Book

Please consider the discussion questions below to enhance your reading of Before Ever After by Samantha Sotto.

Readers' Guide for Before Ever After

1. Before Ever After is a novel that defies easy categorization. Adena Halpern called it a “smartly written romance, mystery, and historical adventure,” and Anne Fortier said that it is a novel that “challenges the natural laws of fiction writing.” What other novels have you read that defy easy explanation? How do you think this affected your interest in the characters as you continued to read?
 
2. Shelley booked herself on the Slight Detour tour and met Max, because she was trying to escape her present life in London. She was in London because she was trying to escape life with her mother in Ohio. Max, in his way, has had to keep moving from place to place in order to escape his past as well. To what extent do these escapes improve our characters’ lives? And to what extent have their choices been hindered?
 
3. This novel is as enchanting and fantastical as a modern fairy tale. What did you think Shelley and Paolo would find at the end of their journey?
 
4. Throughout the novel, those who love Max are connected by their shared appreciation of (and inability to replicate) his famous baked egg and cheese dish. Is there a dish that reminds you of a certain time and place or of a certain person? Is there a dish that you are known for?
 
5. As the Slight Detour progresses and the campers move from Paris to Vienna to Slovenia to Venice, we discover clues about each of Max’s past lives. Which was your favorite city or monument visited and why? Which of Max’s life stories did you find the most moving?
 
6. Max has lived through natural disasters, revolutions, wars, societal shifts, and remarkable technological innovations. How do you think each lifetime has affected him? How did watching these transitions help make him the person he is today? And what do these lessons offer to the rest of us?
 
7. When Shelley first meets Dex, she thinks that he is lovelorn and lost as she is. As the story progresses we learn that Dex indeed feels this way but for much more complex reasons. What does Dex know about love and loss that Shelley needs to learn? Is Dex’s character more like Max or more like Shelley?
 
8. Do you think that Gestrin was sincere in his offer to help Max find an immortal companion? Why or why not?
 
9. History is filled with the myths, legends, and real-life stories of those searching for an elixir for immortality, a fountain of youth, a way to escape death. How does Max’s story remind you of other stories? How is it distinct?
 
10. The novel is left open-ended. What do you think of Shelley’s ultimate decision? Do you believe that Shelley achieves immortality? What choice would you make if you were in her place?
 
For more information visit SamanthaSotto.com,  twitter.com/SamanthaSotto, and  facebook.com/samanthasotto. 

Your E-Mail Address
send me a copy

Recipient's E-Mail Address
(multiple addresses may be separated by commas)

A personal message: