Any Place I Hang My Hat

Any Place I Hang My Hat

A Novel

  • reading group guide
Amy was barely born with a spoon in her mouth let alone a silver one. Her mother abandoned her before her first birthday and her father, a small-time crook, was in jail more time than he was out. Raised by her flaky and slightly felonious grandmother, Amy worked hard and managed to get scholarships to boarding school, then Harvard, then the Columbia School of Journalism. But now -- a few years into her stint as a reporter for a prestigious magazine -- she doesn't know who she is or how to connect with the world. Seeking answers, she sets out to find the mother she never knew...and maybe a place to belong.
Choose a format:
  • Pocket Star | 
  • 480 pages | 
  • ISBN 9780743463133 | 
  • February 2007
List Price $7.99
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Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

I stepped off the elevator right into the entrance gallery of the co-op. Wow. It was oval. White marble floor, black lacquered walls, ringed with eight or ten white columns topped with marble busts, like a hall of fame for some minor sport. The hostess of the fund-raiser eyed my photo ID, which hung from a metal bead chain. "Well," she said, "In Depth magazine. I absolutely adore it."

"Tha -- " I replied.

I didn't get out nk you because she cut me off: "Is the photographer meeting you here?"

"Sorry, we don't use them. No photos, no illustrations." She'd had her eyes done, so they couldn't open... see more

Reading Group Guide

QUESTIONS AND TOPICS FOR DISCUSSION

1. It has been nearly three decades since Amy's mother left her with Grandma Lil. What is it about Freddy Carrasco's story that makes Amy seriously consider looking for her mother after all this time? Why does she go out of her way to help Freddy, even referring him to a lawyer?
2. Amy spent her childhood in a low-income housing project, and in her teens she attended an elite private boarding school. How has each of these experiences contributed to shaping who she is? Has being a part of these two very different social classes actually been an asset to her?
3. What makes Amy and Tatty's friendship so strong? They are different in many ways-both in lifestyle and personality-but is there anything they have in common?
4. In one instance Amy reveals, "For the five thousandth time in my career I wished that instead of being a writer at In Depth, I could be something else, something with emotion" (pg 190). Why do you suppose Amy chose a career as a journalist? Does it have anything to do with its emphasis on fact and not on emotion, as she seems to indicate? How important is professional achievement to Amy?
5. As a reporter, part of Amy's job is to interview, evaluate, and observe other people and then depict them accurately in print. How does Amy see herself? How do others see her, including Tatty, John, Gloria, Chicky, Rose, and Aunt Linda? Compare Amy's public persona with the private person.
6. see more

About the Author

Susan Isaacs
© Deborah Feingold

Susan Isaacs

Susan Isaacs is the author of thirteen novels, including As Husbands Go, Any Place I Hang My Hat, Long Time No See, and Compromising Positions. She is a former editor of Seventeen and a freelance political speechwriter. She lives on Long Island with her husband. All of her novels have been New York Times bestsellers.

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