Ms. Demeanor makes the shortlist of three for the Thurber Prize

We’re overjoyed that Elinor Lipman’s Ms. Demeanor is a finalist for the 23rd Thurber Prize for American Humor – the premier US award for comic writing.

Elinor is the award-winning author of sixteen books of fiction and non-fiction. Her first novel, Then She Found Me, became a 2008 feature film, directed by and starring Helen Hunt, with Bette Midler, Colin Firth and Matthew Broderick.

Under our fiction imprint Lighting, we have so far published UK editions of four of her novels: On Turpentine Lane, Good Riddance, Rachel to the Rescue and most recently Ms. Demeanor.

‘Pure bliss’

Ms. Demeanor is a comedy about love under house arrest. It tells the story of Jane Morgan, a New York lawyer who loses her job when a prudish neighbour observes her having sex on the roof of her Manhattan apartment block.

Convicted of indecency, Jane is sentenced to six months’ house arrest. This seems bleak until she realises she isn’t the only resident of her building wearing an ankle tag. She strikes up a friendship with fellow white-collar felon Perry Salisbury and one thing leads to another…

The New York Times called Ms. Demeanor ‘a joyride’ and ‘a celebration of guiltless pleasure’, while novelist Amanda Craig says: ‘Elinor Lipman is one of my favourite comic novelists: social satire, Jewish wit, pin-sharp on love, mistakes and age. Pure bliss.’

Shortlist of three

The novel is on a shortlist of three for this year’s Thurber Prize, along with The Lemon by S.E. Boyd and Disorientation by Elaine Hsieh Chou.

The winner will be announced at the Columbus Museum of Art in Columbus, Ohio on 31 May 2024.

Order your copy of Ms. Demeanor HERE.