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The Monsters of Templeton by Lauren Groff
The Monsters of Templeton begins with 28-year-old Willie Upton coming home to Templeton, New York, after an affair with her doctoral advisor at Stanford ended badly. Willie had been raised alone by her mother, who had left her with the impression that Willie's birth was the result of a one-night stand in a commune. When Willie returns to Templeton, her mother tells Willie that her father was really a married man in Templeton, but she refuses to identify him, just leaving the hint that he's also descended from the town's founder, Marmaduke Temple. Willie begins digging into her genealogy and the history of Templeton, discovering the secrets that have been left out of the town history. Lauren Groff's debut novel has received positive reviews with the Toronto Globe and Mail saying, "Told with humour and lightness, The Monsters of Templeton takes the reader on a quirky quest as Willie endeavours to come to terms with her present by understanding the secrets of her shared past. It is an astounding debut, in which Groff's talent is evident from structural complexity to exuberant and unique writing style."