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In the Family Way: an Urban Comedy

"Lynne Sharon Schwartz has taken family life (not your usual family, by any means), the urban myths of New York's Upper West Side, and the changing sexual styles of our day, added her own dry wit, merciless eye, a dash of sympathy, and come up with her own end-of-the-century Comedie Humaine. A quirky, charming, and original novel." Daniel Stern.

Roy, a psychotherapist, and his first wife, Bea, a caterer, are the linchpins of an extended family dispersed through an apartment building on New York's Upper West Side. Around them cluster their four children (two of them Vietnamese twins) with assorted friends and lovers; Roy's next two wives, one of them stolen from a neurotic patient; and Bea's lover (the Russian emigre superintendent), lesbian artist sister, and caustic mother (the landlady.)

In the Family Way takes aim at contemporary social and sexual behavior as this confused but clever cast of characters, with their entanglements and betrayals, seeks love and happiness in the free-for-all nineties. Blinded by self-deception and driven by self-gratification, they couple and uncouple as they struggle to redefine the idea of family.

"Lynne Sharon Schwartz combines hilarity with keen insight as she romps through the lives of these memorable New Yorkers. Amid the comedy, she manages to raise in subtle ways some important questions about the nature of moral freedom and responsibility. In the Family Way is as pleasurable to read as it is provocative." Joanna Scott