Semifinalist, Kore Press 2018 Memoir Award
“Fantasy meets reality in this charming, funny, true-life memoir, propelled by the vivacious, utterly engaging voice of our compulsively honest narrator. A real page-turner.”
- Phillip Lopate
"Thirty-four-year old Heather Siegel is eccentric, artsy, and independent, and she doesn't believe in romantic fairy-tales. At least not until she meets her opposite in Jon, a man of science, logic, and kingly ego. She not only falls for the idea of love and "soulmates," she goes one step further. Going against the advice of three waves of feminism, she moves to the suburbs of Long Island and invests wholeheartedly in marriage and motherhood. Naturally, it doesn’t take long before she finds herself lost and adrift. To regain a shred of her old self, she embarks upon a series of quirky and painfully humorous entrepreneurial and health adventures.
Can you be a stay-at-home mother and still be a feminist? Does the word soulmate have more than one meaning? Should we believe in the “true love” narrative? What is the goal of marriage and raising children, anyway? These are questions posed within this high drama of the mundane, in which (spoiler alert) no murder happens, no affair unfolds, and no death, illness, or trauma is suffered. What does unspool is an entertaining arc of transformation, a light introspective about a marriage of opposites, and boatloads of honesty. The King and The Quirky is sure to get you thinking about your own relationships and it will remind you that perhaps your most important relationship is the one you have with yourself."
From "A Brief Cosmology of Cosmetology":
(published in print on Salon.com)
"You’re doing what?" a writing mentor balked some time ago. "Makeup?" She waited for me to tell her that I was joking. When I didn’t, she looked at me squarely. "You need to stop that immediately. It does something to the brain to do something you shouldn’t be doing.”
She was right, of course — unless this was something I should be doing. Two years later, I haven’t stopped. And I’m not sure why. Maybe I am waiting to see what it does to my brain.
BOOK READING From the The King & The Quirky:
I made my way up the carpeted, 80s style staircase, taking in the dirty white walls lined with framed close-up pictures of eyes, brows, and lips-- outdated looks I hoped were not a harbinger of what was to come.
OUT FROM THE UNDERWORLD
5 star review on Amazon
"Heather Siegel has taken the raw material of an unusually deranged childhood, and done with it what very few can do: fashioned a piece of writing so smart, funny, and insightful that, as we read, we see the narrator growing from a street-smart little cynic into a remarkably understanding woman. More one cannot ask of any memoirist."
-- Vivian Gornick