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My New American Life by Francine Prose
In My New American Life, Lula is a twenty-six-year-old Albanian woman trying to carve out her version of the American dream despite an expired tourist visa. She lands a job with Mr. Stanley as a nanny for his rebellious teenage son. Mr. Stanley's best friend is an immigration lawyer who sets out to get her a green card. All is going well for Lula until Albanian men from her past ask her to hide a gun. It's a decision with the potential to undo everything she's worked for. Francine Prose's novel has received mostly positive reviews with the San Francisco Chronicle saying, "Fun and funny, narrated in readable and unremarkable prose, the novel brims with somewhat predictable oddballs: Lula, who combines wiliness and guilelessness; her teenage companion, whose sulkiness barely conceals his sadness; and her vapid Albanian friend, who marries a plastic surgeon for money and a green card. The result is a pleasingly cutting cartoon."