** Publication Date 21 June 2019 **
Abby leads a rather boring, midwestern life working as a cashier at a local grocery store. When she finds out that her childhood best friend Elise is coming home for their ten year high school reunion, Abby sees that as her opportunity to come out of the darkness and start a new life. Elise is a big movie star now, appearing on the cover of magazines and in the tabloids. Looking at her high school yearbook, Abby sees that Elise once said, “I hope that we can be close again,” and Abby believes that time is now.
The Paper Wasp is an amazing tale of one woman on the edge of sanity. Abby is the girl that was supposed to succeed, but somehow along the way began to lose the fight with reality. She dreams in full color, premonitory dreams that she commits to elaborate drawings. Convinced that these drawings are her ticket to meeting her soulmate, an older film director with whom she is not quite obsessed, Abby makes the journey to Hollywood to find her way to Perren.
Acampora so beautifully captures two young women who start out in the same place, but move to such different places. Both have needs that can’t be met by reality. This isn’t a book about mental illness, but more about the paths that can be taken to find your way. It is a story of in some ways redemption for one and a fall from grace for the other. I was spellbound by it.