New Fiction: The Opposite of Everyone – Joshilyn Jackson

Jackson will be a familiar voice to many readers. A bestselling author many times over, she is especially beloved by the Indies. Her Southern-inflected stories are wise cracking, tough and infused by a core kindness that allows a complex humanity to shine through her characters.

I’m not a bit surprised that this story of a daughter coming to terms with her mother is the #1 Indie Next pick for March as well as an Okra Pick and a LibraryReads pick. Jackson never been better than in this tale of reinvention and understanding how our personal stories can either weigh us down or release us.

 “Paula has settled near Atlanta, where she tries to push away everyone she cares about, but this becomes impossible when her past and present converge. She hasn’t seen her mother Kai in years; then, the monthly check she sends to her is returned with a cryptic message, and a half-brother, Julian, whom she didn’t know she had, shows up. Although Paula is rough and reckless, Jackson makes her an easy character to root for by vividly depicting her inner struggle and past. This is an excellent read with a fresh take on the detective genre.”
Publishers Weekly

 Jackson delivers another quirky, Southern-based, character-driven novel that combines exquisite writing, vivid personalities, and imaginative storylines while subtly contemplating race, romance, family, and self. A searing yet ultimately uplifting look at broken people who heal themselves and each other through forgiveness, love, and the power of stories.”
Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“The smart-ass, no holds-barred narration by whip-smart Paula/Kali… should please the many fans of Jackson’s snappy writing style.”
Library Journal (starred review)

“Jackson excels at weaving a wholly absorbing story with vivid characters. Paula’s fractious relationship with Birdwine is the highlight as the two sparring, onetime lovers renegotiate their relationship…. [T]his novel, nonetheless, makes some affecting points about the importance of the stories we tell to each other and to ourselves.”
Booklist

Have you ever loved a book so much that you finished it and immediately went back to the beginning and read it over again? That’s exactly what I did with The Opposite of Everyone. Jackson gives us wonderful characters, with fully human qualities and flaws; her ear for language and dialogue is first-rate; her plots manage to be both surprising and satisfying. The Opposite of Everyone centers around Paula, a self-determined, overachieving divorce attorney who appeared in Someone Else’s Love Story. The carefully constructed edifice of Paula’s life begins to crumble when she learns that her estranged mother is dying, and the events that unfold – surprising, hilarious, terrifying, and delightful – will keep the reader biting their nails until the last page.
— Carol Schneck Varner, Schuler Books and Music, Okemos, MI

“More gritty than her former novels, and I loved every page. This is the story of a strong woman with a broken past, who has moved on…but gets caught up in her old life again when an unexpected sibling shows up on her doorstep. Just so darn good – read it!”
— Jessilyn Norcross, McLean and Eakin Booksellers, Petoskey, MI

The Opposite of Everyone (9780062105684) by Joshilyn Jackson. $26.99 hardcover. 2/16/16 on sale.

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