Joshua Henkin

A tender, powerful, and big-hearted novel about love in the face of loss, from the award-winning author of The World Without You and Matrimony

Joshua Henkin's most recent novel, MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS, was published in June of 2021. It was selected by the American Booksellers Association as the #1 Indie Next Pick and was named an Editors' Choice Book by The New York Times. Joshua is also the author of the novels SWIMMING ACROSS THE HUDSON, a Los Angeles Times Notable Book; MATRIMONY, a New York Times Notable Book; and THE WORLD WITHOUT YOU, which was named an Editors' Choice Book by The New York Times and The Chicago Tribune and was the winner of the 2012 Edward Lewis Wallant Award for Jewish American Fiction and a finalist for the 2012 National Jewish Book Award. The film version of THE WORLD WITHOUT YOU was released in 2019 and stars Radha Mitchell, James Tupper, PJ Byrne, Perrey Reeves, and Chris Mulkey. Joshua lives in Brooklyn, NY, with his wife and daughters and their huge Newfoundland, and he directs and teaches in the MFA program in Fiction Writing at Brooklyn College.

News

  • Publication Day!

    June 15, 2021

    Morningside Heights is out today, and what better way to celebrate publication day than this lovely review in the New York Times Book Review. Thank you to Jean Hanff Korelitz for understanding the book so well and capturing its beating heart. I'm very grateful.
    https://www.nytimes.com/2021/06/15/books/review/joshua-henkin-morningside-heights.html

  • Morningside Heights is Named #1 Indie Next Book for June

    May 12, 2021

    A huge thank you to the American Booksellers Association and to independent booksellers across the country for naming Morningside Heights the #1 Indie Next Book for June!

Words of Gratitude to Independent Booksellers for Making Morningside Heights the #1 Indie Next Pick for June

Advance Praise for Morningside Heights

  • “[Henkin's] story of a brilliant Shakespearean and his wife—once his student—radiates a tenderness for the city that we, his intended readers, can best appreciate—perhaps now most of all, as we ask our city to return to us . . . Henkin is a fine writer with a wry fondness for his characters, but like any New Yorker he knows how to keep a safe distance. The specific letting-go that all New Yorkers must master if we don’t wish to be crippled by nostalgia—especially now, if we do hope to see our city’s resurgence—is particularly nuanced when a city neighborhood is also a college town, but Henkin more than meets this challenge.”

    Jean Hanff Korelitz, The New York Times Book Review
  • "Joshua Henkin’s novel is a richly textured family portrait that feels deeply familiar yet profoundly moving and illuminating. As in the best fiction, you come away from Morningside Heights reluctantly—attached to its characters and with new understanding of what it is to be a feeling person dealing with life’s unpredictability . . . His book succeeds not by dint of dazzling language or narrative sleight of hand, but by his unwavering empathy, which leads him to create remarkably real, complex characters."

    Heller McAlpin, The Wall Street Journal
  • “Henkin has explored the exigencies of marriage and families (especially recombined families) through unflinching yet kind depictions of the ways we live now . . . His thoughtful new novel, Morningside Heights, proves no exception . . . Notably and satisfyingly, much of "Morningside" takes place against a New York City that is clearly beloved to its author. Henkin tours a wealth of landmarks and neighborhoods with authority and affection . . . Quietly told, the story nonetheless pulses with insistence: Attention must be paid. This subtle urgency opens our own awareness, lens-like, upon the implied human task, larger than any single calamity—that of attending to relentless change, loss, finitude.”

    Joan Frank, The Washington Post
  • "Joshua Henkin is an emotionally generous, deft, witty, and deeply intelligent writer, and his new novel displays these qualities in spades."

    Priscilla Gillman, The Boston Globe
  • “An intimate portrait of a marriage . . . A literary examination of love in later life, Morningside Heights highlights the complexities of monogamy, family, and love.”

    Zibby Owens, Good Morning America
  • “What a glorious book Morningside Heights is, all held together by the amazing character of Spence. I just loved it to pieces.”

    Elizabeth Strout, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Olive Kitteridge
  • "[Morningside Heights] is generous, wise, and wry enough to avoid sentimentality.... Astonishingly, Henkin transforms what could be a mighty grim work of fiction into a melancholy and tender one enriched by the viewpoints of a constellation of chcaracters."

    Elizabeth Taylor, The National Book Review
  • “A family drama filled with compelling characters . . . The essence of the novel is universal, particularly its deft yet raw depictions of what it’s like to live, day by day, minute by minute, with an utterly cruel disease...Morningside Heights is a courageous novel, and a moving one.”

    Abigail Pickus, Hadassah Magazine
  • “Painfully authentic…. Henkin tells his story simply and deftly, with a narrative economy that conceals much close observation and human understanding."

    Adam Kirsch, The Jewish Review of Books
  • "Poignant.... The book intimately explores both the ravages of [Alzheimer's] and its impact on family members and other caregivers.... And it finds some relief from despair in the redemptive power of love.... Touching and tenderly depicted."

    Julia M. Klein, The Forward
  • "Henkin brilliantly conveys the complexities of a New York City family in this humane, compulsively readable tale . . . In 2006, Shakespeare scholar Spence Robin, 57, is diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s, and his wife, Pru Steiner, is forced to return his book advance . . . [Henkin] shows how Spence was a wunderkind in Columbia’s English department, making the tragedy of his illness particularly poignant . . . Equally well handled is Pru’s transformation from wife and lover to caretaker—wrenching changes that Henkin conveys without dissolving into sentimentality or cliché, but rather leaving readers with a kernel of hope. This is a stunning achievement."

    PUBLISHERS WEEKLY (BOXED, STARRED REVIEW)
  • “You know a novel is good when the thought of leaving the world it creates and the people who live there fills you with sadness and a profound sense of loss. Joshua Henkin’s Morningside Heights is just such a novel.”

    RICHARD RUSSO, Pulitzer Prize-Winning Author of Empire Falls
  • “Reading Morningside Heights is an emotional experience. How much can befall a marriage, and what extraordinary demands must sometimes be met for loved ones to endure. But it is a delightful read as well, because the people here are such thoroughly engaging company. So much that happens in this book is unexpected that it reads at the pace of a suspense novel, but its greatest achievement is to make us feel that we are in the presence of real people, living out their joys and sorrows and making their way in the real world.”

    SIGRID NUNEZ, National Book Award-Winning author of The Friend
  • “A propulsive, literary page-turner… Morningside Heights is not only a study in craft, but a testament to the resiliency of the human spirit…Morningside Heights reads like an ode to New York as it maps a narrative of loss, and asks us to consider what it means to live and love, where our faith lies, and what we leave behind.”

    Sara Lippmann, Vol. 1 Brooklyn
  • "Morningside Heights is a lovely and bittersweet ode to the challenges of partnership and parenting, as well as a fond tribute to New York City. It is an especially worthwhile exploration of memory and identity, and the spaces where the two intersect."

    Sarah Rachel Egelman, Bookreporter
  • “A moving look at how families cope with unforeseen events and how relationships evolve.”

    Sonia Taitz, Jewish Book Council
  • “With its impeccable plotting, well-drawn characters, and balanced deployment of wit and feeling, Morningside Heights offers all the pleasures promised by Henkin’s rigorous narrative attention—in aggregate: a pleasure of precision.”

    The Brooklyn Review
  • “Nuanced and sensitive . . . a deeply human portrait of deterioration.”

    Emily Temple, Lit Hub
  • “A beautifully written novel . . . Morningside Heights is incredible.”

    Emily Burack, Alma
  • “Henkin has managed to inject humor as well as pathos into a searing portrait of a family in crisis. . . . Morningside Heights is beautifully written, and nothing mars the undeniable power of this poignant and very intelligent novel.”

    Rita D. Jacobs, World Literature Today
  • “The task of writing the story of a family dealing with the devastating impact of early-onset Alzheimer’s—without veering into sentimentality, or collapsing beneath the weight of melancholy—isn’t an easy one. But Joshua Henkin’s Morningside Heights manages to tell the story of Pru and her husband Spence, once a great Shakespearean scholar and professor, with such deep humanity and kindness that I forgave him for also having managed to write a page-turner (though it still feels slightly unfair to be able to do both). The novel is a portrait of a family in all its complexity and an exploration of care work—both paid and unpaid—the latter of which makes it feel especially timely.”

    Jessie Gaynor, Lit Hub, "38 Novels You Need to Read this Summer"
  • "A superstar literature professor is struck down in his prime in the cruelest possible way . . . Henkin specializes in melancholy stories about complicated families, and this one is a real heartbreaker. His portrait of Pru is nuanced and sensitive, following her into one of the darkest places a spouse can go and hitting the notes just right . . . Caring for a spouse with Alzheimer's is an ever more common heartbreak, illuminated by this tender portrait of a marriage."

    KIRKUS REVIEWS
  • "Morningside Heights is a lovely novel, and a moving meditation on how the act of loving a specific person changes us. When Pru Steiner’s marriage to Spence Robin is tragically cut short, she has to take stock of who she has become in the intervening years. Henkin has written a beautifully nuanced story that I was unable to put down.”

    ANN NAPOLITANO, New York Times Best-Selling author of Dear Edward
  • “What does it really mean: in sickness and in health, till death do us part? Morningside Heights knows the answer. In this tender, wise, and unflinching novel, Joshua Henkin traces the bittersweet arc of a lifelong love, with all its joy and pain.”

    TOM PERROTTA, New York Times Best-Selling author of Election and Little Children
  • "Henkin treats the complications of a complicated disease with insight, honesty, and humanity, in a style that is as readable as it is consummately literate."

    Library Journal
  • “A moving, heart-wrenching account of a family’s connections as they face a slow-moving goodbye.”

    Booklist
  • “Henkin explores with great tenderness the many, many challenges of losing a loved one to Alzheimer’s…. It’s impossible not to be moved…. Despite this, Morningside Heights is not, ultimately, a sad novel. Henkin imbues it with a sense of hope, a kind of appreciation for the mundane moments that make up a life…. In Henkin’s masterful hands, this story of everyday events becomes bigger than the sum of its parts, a novel that explores what it means—and what it takes—to love another person, and to be loved in return."

    Kerry McHugh, Shelf Awareness
  • “In the sheer pleasure of reading Joshua Henkin’s new novel—of following its swift narrative movements, getting to know its all-too-human characters, inhabiting its detail-perfect settings, its relentlessly accurate portrayals— of marriage and parenthood and siblinghood—we can almost forget, for moments on end, that its subject is one of the most painful imaginable: the loss of a self, of a marriage, of a shared life. But the real magic of Morningside Heights is the way it lifts us up, reminding us that ordinary people undertake extraordinary acts of survival every day.”

    JULIE ORRINGER, New York Times Best-Selling author of The Invisible Bridge

Praise From Independent Booksellers

  • "A moving portrait of a marriage, and a family, and people just caring for each other through difficult times. It’s a perfect story for our present moment."

    Christie Olson Day, Gallery Bookshop, Mendocino, CA
  • "Complicated families are endlessly fascinating. Especially when their tale is told by a sophisticated writer like Joshua Henkin. MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS takes a deeply compassionate view of illness, estrangement, and the pitfalls of convoluted familial ties. Readers will recognize bits of themselves in Henkin’s characters as the specific becomes a universal story. This is a writer at the top of his game and a novel that will soar to the top of the best seller list."

    Pamela Klinger-Horn, The Valley Bookseller, Stillwater, MN
  • "What a delightful, insightful novel! Joshua Henkin’s MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS is an engaging story about finding love when you least expect it. Filled with intimately drawn characters, it takes us through the ups and downs of one unforgettable family. I dare readers not to find little bits of themselves and their family members throughout the pages of this fascinating read!"

    Anderson McKean, Page & Palette, Fairhope, AL
  • "My favorite kind of novel! Though undeniably heartbreaking, this story of a family losing a loved one to Alzheimer's is surprisingly funny, heartwarming, and hopeful. Seamlessly shifting perspectives and moving between past and present, Henkin exquisitely weaves together moments of grief and joy, anger and tenderness, shame and honor, remorse and second chances. A testament to the power of love and resilience in the face of tragedy, MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS is necessary reading for our times and for many years to come."

    Alyssa Raymond, Copper Dog Books, Beverly, MA
  • "Beautiful, concise writing makes Morningside Heights such a pleasure to read! When well known Shakespearean professor Spence Robin is struck with early onset Alzheimer's, his wife, Pru, and adult children rally in surprising ways. While Alzheimer's is not generally the most uplifting topic, Henkin creates characters that are so real and likable that this story of a family's love for one another outweighs their grief. A gracious look at living with and overcoming adversity."

    Beth Mynhier, Lake Forest Book Store, Lake Forest, IL
  • "An emotional and touching story about a family living in NYC and the love they share, their triumphs, their challenges and how they cope when things turn out differently than anticipated. Right from the start, I felt connected to this family – all the characters just felt so real as if I was right there with them. And I found myself rooting for each and every one. Masterly written, this moving novel is a fantastic book club pick and well worth the read!"

    Kathy Morrison, Newtown Bookshop, Newtown, PA
  • "I loved this book! The writing is beautiful. The character development is phenomenal. I was moved by all of the characters in the story, however quirky Arlo stands out as a favorite. Booksellers will find amusement in his book shelving methods, which had me laughing out loud. I also shed a few tears, so this book has it all. It's a winner with so much heart! I highly recommend it."

    Sarah Fox, Titcomb’s Bookhop, East Sandwich, MA
  • "Morningside Heights is a novel beautifully rooted in the realities of everyday life. Focusing on the Steiner-Robin family of Pru, Spence, their daughter Sara, and Spence’s son Arlo, Henkin weaves together a breathtaking portrait of family and friendship in what is also a love letter to the residents of New York. Each character feels like a friend or family member, all with foibles and faults, strong wills and deep feelings. I did not want to leave their world, one that reminds me so much of the city I know and love, and my own family and friends who call it home."

    Sarah Danforth, Towne Book Center, Collegeville, PA
  • "A very real portrait of a marriage, a family, in all its imperfections. And a beautiful portrayal of love, loss, and longing for the life we want versus the life we have. Revealed to us in moments, that strung together, tell the story. I loved every word."

    Alana Haley, Schuler Books, Grand Rapids, MI
  • "A tender, inspirational story of a brilliant, award-winning professor succumbing to early-onset Alzheimer’s, and his family's painful struggle to support his legacy and protect his dignity. With touching insight, Henkin weaves a narrative that captures the emotional heartbreak of caring for and witnessing the decline of a loved one. In realistic, sensitive detail, the story of Pru and Spence illustrates the joy and complex pain of family life as they balance children, career, loss and regret. Henkin is a masterful storyteller. I loved this book!"

    Mary McCormick, Bookbug, Kalamazoo, MI
  • "Morningside Heights is about family, mortality, and the little moments that add up to make a life. It is a quiet and simple book, a love story with delightful and real characters, and I found myself drawn to the imperfections and humanity on the pages. It does not wrap up into a perfect bow, but it is a story filled with hope nonetheless, a story I needed to read."

    Sarah Fischer, Downbound Books, Cincinnati, OH
  • "Great fiction always feels more real to me than non-fiction and Morningside Heights achieves that. Henkin's depiction of Pru and Spence's marriage over 30 years shows how love is just the beginning of a life together and how life is never what you expect it to be. Also I grew up in NYC and particularly appreciated how accurate Henkin’s depictions of Morningside Heights felt to me."

    Cathy Fiebach, Main Point Books, Bryn Mawr, PA
  • "The story of the marriage of Pru and Spence begins as a passionate romance between a star faculty member and a student. Joshua Henkin writes with affection for his characters, and as decades of life’s challenges buffet the couple, readers will come to care for them, too…. The heart of their story, the brilliant Spence’s onset of dementia, illustrates true family commitment. Book clubs will savor this novel."

    Cheryl McKeon, Bookhouse of Stuyvesant Plaza, Albany, NY
  • "Despite his eccentricities, Pru Steiner’s marriage to Spence Robin, once her professor at Columbia, is a stable and loving one. Robin is an academic rock star, admired for his ability to relate to students in the classroom and to scholars of Shakespeare on the printed page. His ability to convey more intimate feelings within his family, however, was not so sharply honed, especially with the resentful son of his first marriage. Pru’s devotion faces the ultimate test when she realizes that her brilliant husband has begun the descent into the twilight world of Alzheimer's. This is a moving, involving story of a remarkable woman's determination to retain a semblance of order and dignity in a world that is falling apart."

    Alden Graves, Northshire Bookstore, Manchester Center, VT
  • "A very well written novel about a very difficult subject. It has quite the cast of characters and I would love to meet up with some of them again in a future novel. Even with the darkness of the subject there were some laugh out loud parts!"

    Fran Ziegler, Titcomb’s Bookshop, East Sandwich, MA
  • "Morningside Heights is an immersive, bittersweet, and beautifully written story exploring the nuance of familial bonds and the impact of living with chronic illness. Joshua Henkin’s characters are engaging and authentic – I couldn’t put this down and read it in two days- and their voices lingered with me for weeks after."

    Grace Rajendran, University Book Store, Seattle, WA
  • "This book reminds me of the Barbra Streisand song 'People'.. people who need people.. are the luckiest people. I love the people in Morningside Heights and the many layers to their relationships. It's not just a family saga, it's not just an Alzheimer’s story, it's not just a marriage novel, it's about the puzzle of people that we all create, the people who make up its borders, or the wide swaths of blue, or the intricate designs within. It's about how all the people within this books pages fit together, even when they think they don't, and the beautiful picture that together they all make."

    Jamie Anderson, Downtown Books, Manteo, NC
  • "The complications of family, of love and loss, parents, siblings, caretakers. are so beautifully rendered here. A poignant story -- captivating and compelling all the way through."

    Kathy Crowley, Belmont Books, Belmont, MA
  • "Morningside Heights chronicles a family’s attempt to make their life work through an unexpected curveball thrown at them. There is real love between the parents, Spence and Pru, and their child Sarah; and even for Arlo, Spence’s child from a previous short-lived marriage. When Spence is diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s, everyone’s life is turned upside down. While this story centers around Spence’s decline, it really is Pru who shines. She loves her husband, however she never conceived of becoming a caregiver and slowly dissolves into his disease. It’s heartbreaking and uplifting all at once. It’s a great testament that life continues to evolve and rebuild in the face of such adversity. "

    Jason Kennedy, Boswell Book Company, Milwaukee, WI
  • "I have not come across many novels that address the topics of progressive disease and caretaking as tenderly as Morningside Heights by Joshua Henkin. I am glad to see this book is already receiving attention, months before its release! It is well deserved! The clipped prose balances the weighty subject matter without sacrificing emotion or plot. The characters are extremely well written (especially Pru, Ginny, and Arlo) and their development is realistic and heartfelt. I will certainly be recommending this book to our customers."

    Stephanie Kruse, Bank Square Books, Mystic, CT
  • "Joshua Henkin has issued an invitation to view the timeline of an American marriage. Columbia University professor, Spence Robin, was a young hotshot Shakespearean expert, capable of filling lecture halls with enraptured students. Pru Steiner was one of them. The attraction and love was immediate, the marriage secure and long lasting. However, while only in his fifties, Spence receives the horrifying diagnosis of early onset Alzheimer's disease. Their daughter is grown and gone and his son from a previous marriage has always been sporadically estranged; leaving Pru alone as Spence declines and she navigates the changes and loss of a great man. Morningside Heights is poignant, honest, thoughtfully observant, and skillfully wrought."

    Damita Nocton, The Country Bookshop, Southern Pines, NC
  • "This novel is so character driven, which I happen to love! The devotion of a wife to her husband was a joy to read, and although the subject is a serious one there is just enough humor to take the edge off. Well done!"

    Carol Katsoulis, Anderson's Bookshop, Naperville, IL
  • "Ostensibly a book about the long, painful, heartbreaking journey of Alzheimer's, it was the interfamilial relationships that broke my heart the most. Father and son, mother and daughter, and what happens when a spouse must turn to a professional caregiver when they can no longer manage on their own. I cannot recommend this book enough."

    Megan Birch-McMichael, The Silver Unicorn Bookstore, Acton, MA
  • "Whomever the reader, MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS will deeply touch at least one season, if not more, of your life. The story is ‘personal.’ Puts depth into life and the distractions that pop up in the midst of important issues. Beautiful book."

    Kell Austin, The Twig Book Shop, San Antonio, TX
  • "This contemplative novel about a couple dealing with the husband’s early-onset Alzheimer’s brought so many emotions bubbling to the surface for me. I thoroughly enjoyed the book’s sense of pacing and time, as it felt sometimes like decades were speeding by and other times like I was savoring a single moment in the lives of these engaging, complex and realistic characters. It felt so true to life, so like how we perceive the world in fits and starts. A beautiful novel."

    Robin Stern, Books Inc., San Francisco, CA
  • "This is a beautifully woven tapestry of family and all the things that come with it. Loss, love, regrets, and what it means love, despite everything. Morningside Heights is a novel that seeps in and settles on your heart. To read the story of these characters' lives is to know what family, love, and loss can be. The humanity of this novel will sit with me for a long time."

    Tildy Lutts, Belmont Books, Belmont, MA
  • "A cleverly arranged drama that veers between tragedy and ambiguous redemption. The low-key narrative style made me feel like a fly on the wall of this family in crisis. Henkin brings New York to life so vividly you can practically smell the corned beef of its Jewish delis. Each character is so fully rendered you may recognize your own parents or siblings in turn, however painful. The chapters focusing on Arlo, especially, are unputdownable; he brings to mind Franzen's damaged young men, teetering between narcissism and something greater than themselves."

    Paul Murufas, Books Inc., San Francisco, CA
  • "Well written story of a marriage. Pru & Spence. There is an age difference and then a career difference as he continues teaching at university and her career rather stalls. As Pru turns 50, Spence becomes ill and can no longer teach. Compassionate story of family and marriage and then getting on with life. Well written."

    Amy Reynolds, Horizon Books, Traverse City, MI
  • "This touching account of a family, and the complicated personalities that inhabit it, is haunting in its depiction of Alzheimer's. The repercussions of the disease on the wife and children as well as the caretakers are sensitively drawn and poignant."

    Sarah Pease, Buttonwood Books and Toys, Cohasset, MA
  • "This a deeply moving love story about family and the complexities of life when early Alzheimer's is diagnosed with Spence, the brilliant and complex Professor. Henkin writes so poignantly about juggling the real world of illness and all the emotions that ravel around the core of who that person was and is becoming. Honest and tender, this book allows you to sink in with a family in real time. Fans of Lisa Genova, Still Alice will relish this novel."

    Kathy Detwiler, Buttonwood Books and Toys, Cohasset, MA
  • "The first page of Henkin’s engrossing novel has our protagonist meeting her life partner in Ann Arbor, so of course I’m going to continue reading it. The additional scenes that took place in Brooklyn, Columbus, San Francisco, Ames, Iowa and DC made me feel like I was being stalked. These are all places where I have a close family connection, too. Okay, but there is another familiar story arc here, too: girl with promise throws her lot in with a “great man” and eventually comes to question whether she sacrificed too much of herself when she did. Not only is Pru’s professor husband Spence somewhat older than she is, he comes with personal baggage—a troubled young son, a needy ex-wife, and a severely disabled sister, all of whom need financial assistance. Henkin tells the backstory of all of these people as well as the hired caretaker and her son, as they come together to take care of Spence, who develops early-onset Alzheimer’s. I can say from personal experience that this part of the novel is authentic and heartbreaking. But if you are inclined to pass over books that hit too close to him, do not. The author weaves his characters’ stories into a web of acceptance, hope, and renewal that is very much what we need now."

    Carla Bayha, Literati Bookstore, Ann Arbor, MI
  • "Pru and Spence have a stable and loving marriage and lead fulfilling and interesting lives until Spence's diagnosis with Alzheimer's in his late fifties. His illness ends his career and erodes his independence while Pru must learn to live a life centered on caregiving while deriving what pleasure she can from her greatly altered life. Each character in Henkin’s wonderful novel is perfectly authentic. An intimate and fascinating exploration of a marriage in inevitable crisis."

    Stan Hynds, Northshire Bookstore, Manchester Center, VT Bookseller
  • "Morningside Heights by Joshua Henkin is a beautifully crafted novel with well-drawn characters set in New York City. It is the story of a marriage, a family and the slow losing of the father to Alzheimer’s. Spence Robin, a successful professor in the English Department at Columbia is diagnosed at age 57 with early onset Alzheimer’s. Henkin’s description of Spence’s decline is so beautifully written that we can witness the progression of the disease including those moments when Spence seems to return to himself. Pru, Spence’s second wife, finds herself in the role of caretaker, a role most people are not well prepared to handle. Arlo, Spence’s son from his first marriage, joins the family for a couple of years, but he never believes that he fits there. His much younger half-sister, Sarah, is too young to be his confidante. All of these characters will garner your engagement in their very moving story."

    Carolyn Statler, Three Sisters Books and Gifts, Shelbyville, IN
  • "This was a phenomenal read that I couldn't put down because it was so heart wrenching yet moving. You really connect with all of the characters in this story."

    Deanna Bailey, Story on the Square, McDonough, GA
  • "A beautifully written story of a marriage from its beginning with him as the professor and she as the student to the end, when Alzheimer's changes everything."

    Beth Carpenter, The Country Bookshop, Southern Pines, NC
  • "I think tender is the best word to describe this story of a family, a marriage and the unexpected turns that life takes. Pru's ability to role with the punches with grace and love is an example for us all. Loved this book!"

    Jessica Osborne, E. Shaver Booksellers, Savannah, GA Bookseller
  • "A deeply human & emotional story of a beautifully imperfect family."

    Shannon Alden, Literati Bookstore, Ann Arbor, MI
  • "Morningside Heights pulled me into this complex, extended NY family, with all the love, loss, and misunderstandings we all experience. Henkin also carries us through the sadness of progressive Alzheimer's in a very real and caring way. Loved it."

    Kappy Kling, HearthFire Books and Treats, Evergreen, CO
  • "Join Pru Steiner and Spence Robin on the marriage journey of a lifetime. When literature professor Spence begins showing signs of Alzheimer's, he and his normally hesitant and deferential wife and former graduate student Pru must reverse roles. This book spans decades of life lessons on child-rearing, divorce, religious differences, and caregiving with a humor and attention to daily detail rarely found in today's fiction. This one is a keeper."

    Kelly Barth, Raven Book Store, Lawrence, KS
  • "Morningside Heights is a moving novel about the challenges and joys of a loving marriage. Pru is a gifted student who starts graduate school at Columbia and falls in love with her professor who is the most sought after Shakespeare academic. Their life long love story is tested when his son, Arlo, from a previous marriage moves into their apartment and struggles to fit into the family, especially with his half-sister Sarah. As the children grow into adults, their father relies on their support and the support of Pru more and more. This novel celebrates the triumph of unconditional love and the complexities of relationships."

    Kristin Pidgeon, Riverstone Bookstore, Pittsburgh, PA
  • "The beauty of Morningside Heights is its familiarity -- Pru and Spence, falling in love, growing up and growing older, routines and creature comforts, challenges that are then upended by real life. Over thirty years we're right there with them on the upper west side of Manhattan for all of the real parts, the neat ones and the messy ones until something isn't quite right with Spence, The Great One. Henkin’s writing is warm and smooth, funny and sad, inviting us in for a front row seat to life on Morningside Heights - sharing all the parts of a long marriage and a full life."

    Linda McLoughlin Figel, Pages: a Bookstore, Manhattan Beach, CA
  • "The characters are real. I can imagine knowing them, reacting as they do, changing as they do. I think this is a quiet book. It brought me into these people's lives and I am glad that I could spend time with them."

    Rene Martin, Quail Ridge Books, Raleigh, NC
  • "Told in the distinct voices of Pru, Arlo and Sarah, this is the story of a family over several decades. Pru Steiner grew up in a mostly kosher family in Columbus but looked forward to breaking away. She ended up at Columbia for a master’s degree where she was courted by, and fell in love with, her young but ambitious and brilliant Shakespeare professor, Spence Robin. Pru’s life focus changed to one of wife and mother when she had their daughter Sarah. Spence also had a son, Arlo, from a previous partner. Arlo has a complicated relationship with his father’s family. Sarah is well loved and high achieving but not above competing for her father’s attention. Things start to unravel when Spence develops early-onset Alzheimer’s in his late 50s. Morningside Heights is an honest, poignant, and occasionally humorous look at one family coping with the specifics of an awful illness. It was an honor to read this advanced copy. "

    Shirley Freeman, Bookbug, Kalamazoo, MI
  • "The twists and turns a life can take are tender and funny and, always, it's the children who have to pay for it. Loved it!"

    Anne Holman, King's English Bookshop, Salt Lake City, UT
  • "The plight of a family living with Alzheimer's is skillfully handled in Joshua Henkin's novel, Morningside Heights. When it becomes obvious that this is what Pru is dealing with with her husband, Spence, the reader sees the deterioration of the person suffering from the disease, the loneliness and alienation of the caretaker, the family's desperate search for solutions and answers, and the inevitable loss that haunts everyone's daily existence. A good discussion-generator for book clubs."

    Mamie Potter, Quail Ridge Books, Raleigh, NC
  • "Set on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, the long term marriage of a Columbia University English Professor and his wife, his former grad student, is at the center of this moving, warm and often insightful look at life, love and family. When early onset Alzheimer's affects Spence, the lives of his wife Pru and their daughter Sarah and Arlo, Spence's son from a previous marriage, are forever changed. The complexities of Spence's condition, in relation to himself and his family, are depicted as they struggle with grief, empathy and self preservation. The neighborhood surrounding Columbia University is also vividly portrayed, bringing to life this particular location of New York City. Highly recommend this novel."

    Barbara Hall, Readers Books, Sonoma, CA
  • "Henkin captures so well the unique and slow grief of an Alzheimer's diagnosis; the painful erosion of who Spence was into what he would be, all while those around him mourn the loss of him before he is physically gone. Morningside Heights is a beautiful ode to the havoc Alzheimer's, especially early-onset, can wreak and the strange opportunity it can provide for 'real-time' processing and coming to terms with death and loss. Readable and so easy to turn to the next page, yet in no way simple; each character is filled with depth in their joys, heartbreak, and aspirations. This book is a gem."

    Rebecca Morton, Print: A Bookstore, Portland, ME
  • "A moving portrait of a family dealing with mental health, ageism, and relationships. College student Pru begins a relationship with her much older professor and eventually marries him. As the couple enjoy fulfilling careers, marital bliss, and share a daughter, Pru’s husband develops dementia leading to the family dealing with the aftermath. In addition, her husband’s son from his previous marriage enters the picture leading to a complicated dynamic. Realistic and moving, this insight into a troubled family carries plentiful themes that are relatable."

    Gerard Villegas, Warwick's, La Jolla, CA
  • "The portrayal of early onset Alzheimer's is spot on."

    Kay Wosewick, Boswell Book Company, Milwaukee, WI
  • "Morningside Heights is a quietly powerful novel about the roots and frailties of ambition, the obscure tugging of family ties, and whether it is ever possible to weave those flyaway threads into a cohesive personal legacy. The characters are remarkably drawn -- easy to love in their unpredictable, muddled, searching humanness. While never offering pat sentimentality or easy solutions to interpersonal trauma, Morningside Heights is nevertheless a gently affirming story."

    Kat Leache, Novel, Memphis, TN
  • "Joshua Henkin brings a lot to the reading table with his new novel. He tackles the hardships of marriage after the sparkle and shine have lost their sheen. He manages to bring very real troubling realities to the surface while keeping the reader invested in the unique characters. In short, it's about real life that is far different than expected."

    Jean Lewis, Copperfish Books, Punta Gorda, FL
  • "Henkin has beautifully captured the journey a fractured family goes through, and the strong reverberations that affect each member when this horrible disease strikes. And yet despite the subject matter, the honesty and authenticity of the writing makes reading this novel a tender, emotional experience."

    Melanie Fleishman, Center for Fiction, Brooklyn, NY
  • "It’s the 1970s and English lit doctoral student Ms. Pru Steiner meets to-the-manner-bred and tenured Columbia Shakespeare professor Spence Robin, and so begins their life together in Morningside Heights. By turns humorous and melancholy, shocking and achingly beautiful, this love story is also bruised and ultimately breakable. And so honest."

    Kayleen Rohrer, Inklink Books, East Troy, WI
  • "A melancholy journey through the life of a family, Morningside Heights places the reader in the role of observer through the life and career of a brilliant professor who is struck down by early on-Set Alzheimer's. Joshua Henkin's writing is detached and non-judgmental and the reader bears witness to a family with all of its flaws. A compelling read that book clubs will very much enjoy discussing."

    Mary O’Malley, Skylark Bookshop, Columbia, MO
  • "Morningside Heights is a novel spanning the history of a shared life, its love and sacrifice and the missteps we make in becoming who we were. Henkin has created a story of life so fully honest and true it can only exist in fiction."

    Michelle Cavalier, Cavalier House Books, Denham Springs, IL
  • "I started this book as quarantine began in Seattle, hesitant to keep going because I knew the theme of this character-rich novel was loss. Still, I love novels that explore the full scope of what it means to be human. Henkin’s language is rich yet spare. By the end of the book I knew that I’d miss Pru, the main character, and think of her as an alive person, always wondering what happened to her after the novel."

    Nancy Alton, Phinney Books, Seattle, WA
  • "I absolutely loved it! What started out seeming to be a love story, a very interesting story, turned out to deal with issues that are very pertinent and very real in today’s society."

    Tina Greene-Bevington, Bay Books, Suttons Bay, MI
  • "Students line up to get a seat in the brilliant, young Professor Spence Robin’s post grad course in Shakespeare. So, when Pru finds herself singled out for attention, she is at once flattered and puzzled. As their relationship develops from flirting to dating to marriage, we share their moments of personal discovery: the balancing act of family life with angry teenagers, frustrated personal ambitions; and many years of making do; and finally, in the most moving part of the book, the crushing, heartbreaking decline of Spence into the fog of Alzheimer’s. I love this beautiful novel in which every sentence rings true."

    Sheila Dailey, Barrett Bookstore, Darien, CT
  • "I’ve read Joshua Henkin’s novels and have loved the way his characters develop with grace and nuance. The latest novel fortunately follows the same patterns. This book helps define what marriage looks like in the face of illness or discomfort and asks hard questions with no pat answers. Lovely writing."

    Gayle Shanks, Changing Hands Bookstore, Tempe, AZ
  • "Joshua Henkin is a master at books about family relationships, and Morningside Heights hits the mark. I highly recommend the book, easily related to the characters, and enjoyed following them through journeys to an ultimately satisfying conclusion."

    Sarajane Giddings, Blue Door Books, Cedarhurst, NY
  • "Joshua Henkin centers on family and the depths and evolution of love in Morningside Heights. The author explores a family in all forms chosen, biological, blended, and what family means and what it is to be a family. All the good, the bad, the awkward, said and the unsaid between Pru, her husband Spence kept me captive from the first page to the last. Pru was so genuinely thought out you could not help but share her journey, especially her conflict and burden after her husband's health changes. Her relationship with their children from youth into adulthood is filled with expectations met and failed, love and respect, and support. Morningside Heights is a beautiful novel."

    Calvin Crosby, California Independent Booksellers Alliance-CALIBA
  • "I first fell in love with Joshua Henkin when I read The World Without You. Morningside Heights reminded me why. Henkin has a way of capturing families in all their forms—the good, the bad, and always the complicated. Life and perhaps especially love does not always turn out as planned, and joy may come from unexpected people. Morningside Heights is a place with its own character, and now its characters get to inhabit it while telling their own stories."

    Rona Brinlee, The BookMark, Neptune Beach, FL
  • "When Pru married Spence, her young Shakespeare professor, after graduating from Yale and moving to New York City, she had no way to know what struggles and joys she would face. After 30 years of marriage, Spence is facing cognitive decline and Pru is facing the loneliness of caregiving. The reader finds out about the life of Spence’s son Arlo, from his first marriage to the free spirited Linda, who moves with Arlo every time a new love or dream takes hold. Pru’s and Spence’s daughter, Sarah, is away at medical school so offers little relief to Pru, but Arlo returns with hope for Pru as she negotiates caregiving and a new relationship with Walter. This is a novel about how life happens and how we must adjust to what we are given."

    Sandi Torkildson, A Room of One’s Own, Madison, WI
  • "Morningside Heights by Joshua Henkin explores how the relationship between renowned Columbia University professor Spence Robin and his wife Pru changes when he develops early onset Alzheimer’s disease. Each character must come to terms with the imperfect relationship s/he had with Spence. Other characters in the novel show how people can adapt to life’s unexpected twists and how love endures such challenges. Henkin has done a lot of research on Alzheimer’s disease or he has had firsthand experience with it. Because many individuals will be diagnosed with the disease that will require caregiving over several years, impacting their family emotionally and financially, this novel is perfect for readers who want a love story that shows how a family strives to sustain a loved one’s dignity and life."

    Heather Woodworth, Phoenix Books, Essex Junction, VT
  • "The story is all too familiar: Spence and Pru have a seemingly perfect life--until Spence develops early-onset Alzheimer's, and their world starts to crumble. This is not an easy read--heart-breaking comes to mind--but the great characters and the family dynamics will engage you. Yes, the end for Spence was inevitable, but life went on for everyone around him, and I was left with a sense of hope that they would be okay. If you enjoy Anne Tyler (or vintage Woody Allen movies), read this!"

    Barb Bassett, Red Balloon Bookshop, St. Paul, MN
  • "Morningside Heights took me on an emotional rollercoaster I wasn’t ready for. A genius professor and his star student fall in love, and as their life together progresses, the professor begins to act different, forget things, and seems to lose interest in teaching. At the same time, his wife, Pru, refuses to come to understand that his brain is not working the way it used to and that there is not much she can do for him. Morningside Heights was lovely, endearing, upsetting, and gave me a perspective on something that I, thus far, have not had to deal with in my life. This book shows you just how much one person having Alzheimer’s truly affects everyone."

    Kristin Prout, Gathering Volumes, Perrysburg, OH
  • "Morningside Heights is a moving story of love, perseverance, and what it means to be a family in the face of the failings of the human body. The book follows the struggles of Pru Steiner, whose loyalty is tested by her husband’s early-onset Alzheimer’s. Henkin uses a light touch, relating Pru’s challenges and those of her extended family with gentle humor and a wry compassion."

    Grace Harper, Mac's Backs, Cleveland Heights, OH
  • "Morningside Heights is that perfect New York City novel that you can’t wait to read. It has everything: the Upper West Side, charming, zany characters; intellect and sadness; and a very real story. When Pru falls for her professor (she seems to prefer older men), it’s because of his Vespa, not just his classroom manner. And so the tangle of this tale begins. There’s a brilliant daughter and a wacky stepson. The writing propels you, and then sadly it’s over. I hope Joshua Henkin keeps writing."

    Betty Sudarsky, Wellesley Books, Wellesley, MA
  • "We’re hearing a lot, during this pandemic, about how we’re all connected, all in this together, and I kept thinking about that as I read Joshua Henkin’s Morningside Heights. This is the story of a woman, and how her life changed as her brilliant husband declined. But each vividly drawn character in this novel—children, the ex-wife, the caretaker and her son, friends—is affected…. Beautiful and poignant, this story will stay with me for a long time."

    Janis Herbert, Face in a Book, El Dorado Hills, CA
  • "When Pru Steiner, fresh out of Yale, marries Spence Robin, her slightly older (and somewhat famous) English professor, she has no crystal ball to tell her that thirty years later she will be a caretaker to this once-vibrant intellectual, now weakened by early- onset dementia. Morningside Heights tells the story of Pru navigating the uncharted waters of a marriage now defined by illness. Their daughter Sarah is away in medical school, while Spence's son Arlo, from his first marriage, runs a bio-tech start-up and may offer the key to his father's health. Finally there is Walter, a man who makes Pru feel like she's part of the world again. Henkin presents a clear--eyed and ultimately affectionate story of the ties that bind families together."

    Cindy Pauldine, River's End Bookstore, Oswego, NY
  • "In spare sentences, Joshua Henkin describes a marriage over the long haul. There is the father, a brilliant Columbia professor, the mother -who gives up her PhD studies to marry the great man-, the daughter, who is smart and destined for medical school. There is also a troubled son, from a first, very short-lived marriage. The son lives with his hippie, traveling mother, except for two years spent with his father’s family at the end of adolescence. The simplicity of style is well suited to show the complexity of familial feelings, of love muted by anger, resentment, jealousy or guilt. Although the real topic of this moving novel might be how love endures over the years and despite worries about money, illness and estrangement."

    Francoise Brodsky, Shakespeare & Company, New York, NY
  • "Morningside Heights by Joshua Henkin Henkin has penned an insightful portrait of the Robin family revealing the intimacy of daily life. I loved the characters! Pru, Spence, Arlo, and Sarah captured my imagination. Thoroughly engaging!"

    Stephanie Crowe, Page & Palette, Fairhope, AL
  • "Thoughtful exploration into the experience of watching a loved one succumb to illness and the self-discovery that unfolds throughout that emotional journey. A strong novel with textured characters and evocative writing."

    Annie Romano, An Unlikely Story, Plainville, MA
  • "Simply put...this is a beautiful novel. An insightful and unique portrayal of a story that could happen to anyone, but we pretend it won’t. One of the best character-driven novels I’ve read in a while. I particularly enjoyed how the story was revealed from multiple perspectives and the care with which Henkin treated each of the narrators. As someone who spent significant time as a caregiver and has witnessed Alzheimer's first hand this is the most accurate rendering of the disease I’ve seen in fiction. I applaud Henkin and can't wait to get this in our customers’ hands."

    Stephanie Skees, The Novel Neighbor, Webster Groves, MO
  • "In this sensitive novel about relationships and the long arc of our lives, Henkin explores what it means for our hopes and dreams to change. How are we connected to our younger selves when we want different things? How can we move into the future without giving up our past?"

    Arsen Kashkashian, Boulder Book Store, Boulder, CO
  • "Readers of true-to-life family drama will delight at Joshua Henkin's story of a couple of Upper West Side intellectuals and their kids who, like the rest of us, must navigate all the complexity of marriage, sibling bonds, and the inescapable fallibility of our bodies. Morningside Heights is a lovely portrait of a family: believable, relatable, sensitively wrought, and nicely structured. I, for one, was happy to trade my own woes for this couple's for a bit – and suitably reminded that life is just messy, so get on with it."

    Becky Dayton, The Vermont Book Shop, Middlebury, VT
  • "Oh, this book! It's been a hit and miss year with reading for me, but MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS captivated me from the beginning and didn't let go until the last page. It's tender and smart and funny all while dealing with a difficult life situation. I'm now a huge Joshua Henkin fan and can't wait for everyone to read this.”

    Carolyn Hutton, Mrs. Dalloway’s, Berkeley, CA
  • "Henkin does a great job of pulling the reader into this tragic tale of marriage, human frailty and human emotions. The writing is tight and insightful."

    Joanne Berg, Mystery to Me, Madison, WI
  • "This is a family story of love and loss and accommodation to the unexpected turns of life. The author is tender with these people - he is taking care of them, hearing them, allowing them their faults and foibles and humanity and love. We wander through their rooms, observing them as they navigate their lives. And then miss them when the story concludes."

    Lee Miller, Belmont Books, Belmont, MA
  • "Morningside Heights is a complex and character-driven novel that moved me at so many levels as it explored what it really means—and what it takes—to truly love another person; what is lost and what is gained. Joshua Henkin masterfully paints a rich and real portrait of family love and interrelationships, marital love and the sacrifice that comes with hardship, and what endures when life turns out differently from what we expect. While the book deals with early onset Alzheimer’s, there is something hopeful about the dedication and perseverance of how loved ones handle it and adjust. Best is that we are inside the world of very real people, living out their joys, insecurities, obsessions, and sorrows and making their way despite it all."

    Linda Kass, Gramercy Books, Bexley, OH
  • "Morningside Heights is a tender, elegant and compassionate tale of familial love and discord. Elegantly interwoven, this complex novel's gorgeously non-linear structure and well-developed characters reflect back our own light and shadow -- as well as those murky places in between."

    Victoria Mier, The Spiral Bookcase, Philadelphia, PA
  • "Inhabited by a nuanced cast of characters, Henkin's latest novel is emotionally resonant and deliciously complex. Watching Pru's journey as she navigates her changing marriage and a life defined by the love of one man is heartbreaking in its honesty. Yes, this is the story of one specific family, but it's also a story of every family that has faced hardship and come out the other side."

    Laura Graveline, Brazos Bookstore, Houston, TX
  • "Joshua Henkin’s stellar narrative style and pacing in Morningside Heights enables the reader to observe both the beauty and challenges of a marriage across decades – moving simply and swiftly through time yet conveying the subtle details, complexity and experiences that shape the characters within and around a single family. As Pru’s loyalty and compassion for her husband is tested way too early, the reader also feels the all-to-real brutality of a long and unfortunate illness. This is a poignant and honest novel of love and family in NYC."

    Stefanie Lynn, The Kennett Bookhouse, Kennett Square, PA
  • "I LOVED Morningside Heights. Henkin’s word choice, character development, arc, and all of the details connected me to a book that I couldn’t put down. Having spent lots of time in NY, including my own time at Columbia, I could see everything he described so clearly. The nod to Kathe Kollwitz (for whom my younger sister, Kaethe, was named) brought a gasp of recognition. And this is just a tiny example of the detail with which he crafted this book. Congratulations! Bravo!"

    Mari Korper Allen, Book Passage, Corte Madera, CA
  • "This book is a gift — Henkin's prose is lucid and powerful, and his story is deeply affecting. Henkin pulls no punches, delivering a profound and rewarding work on the far-reaching effects of Alzheimer's."

    Alex Brubaker, Midtown Scholar Bookstore, Harrisburg, PA
  • "Joshua Henkin is a born storyteller! His Covid-delayed novel, Morningside Heights, is proof of that. The story revolves around Pru and Spence’s marriage, children, step-children, infidelity (or the very thought of it?), and the looming specter of Alzheimer’s. Confidently written, the characters and their situations immediately take a place in your heart. There they will remain for long after you finish the book. Book clubs will find much fodder for discussion here!"

    Nancy Simpson-Brice, Book Vault, Oskaloosa, IA
  • "Joshua Henkin has written a touching and sensitive portrayal of a family strained by an Alzheimer’s diagnosis. As the famed Shakespeare scholar Spence Robin steadily worsens, his family members - his wife, their daughter, and the adult son he rarely saw - all reflect on their relationship with him, and with each other. Henkin does a wonderful job exploring their complex family dynamics, marked by love and devotion, but also jealousy and guilt. This is a quiet book, but a powerful one."

    Jane Stiles, Wellesley Books, Wellesley, MA
  • "I felt Morningside Heights in my bones. Joshua Henkin has woven a story that digs deep into the muck of real human relationships. He delves into the complexities of marriage and fidelity in the face of the unexpected. Traces the fine line between a child’s adoration and disdain for his parents. Pulls the fraying ends of a family together through an equalizing grief that will unite them despite it all. Morningside Heights left me with a sweet ache of recognition and an abiding hope in the gritty brand of love that can only be forged through shared hardship."

    Audrey Beatty, River Bend Bookshop, Glastonbury, CT
  • "Morningside Heights is a deeply moving, emotion packed novel. Joshua Henkin has written a characters that feel alive and will feel very relatable to readers. A wonderfully compassionate read about love, growing older together, and loss. I thoroughly enjoyed Morningside Heights. This would make for a lovely book club selection!"

    Kaitlin Smith, Copperfield's Books, Sebastopol, CA
  • "Joshua Henkin's MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS is a tender excavation of what makes a family tick--not all families, and not a perfect family, but one which is persistent and particular and heartbreaking in its believability. Professor Robin Spence is a celebrated mind--clever, beloved, inflexible, unstoppable. But no force of personality protects him from the ravaging effects of early onset Altzheimers. As he is overwhelmed by an illness he can't outsmart or outwill, he and his family are revealed by who he has been to them. From the romantic young man on a scooter to the estranged father who wanted too much and the wrong things, from the uncompromising to the celebrated professor of thousands, who he has been reveals who his wife and children are, with and without him."

    Alex Schaffner, Brookline Booksmith, Brookline, MA
  • "A book that will speak to everyone - a deftly written story of life. One family’s life – but universal in all that encapsulates a life – the good and beautiful right alongside the hard and tragic. Joshua Henkin has expertly given us characters that are wonderful and flawed and oh so relatable. Such an outstanding, thoroughly gratifying read!"

    Julie Slavinsky, Warwick's, La Jolla, CA
  • "Morningside Heights gives the reader a front row seat to observe early onset Alzheimer’s Disease, and its effects on a family. Enter the world of a middle class Brooklyn family who watch their loved one dwindle away, like a candle being snuffed out. Feel the raw emotions of anger, despair, hope, impatience, disappointment, as the loved one is slowly being “robbed of his mind” and is turning into a whole new personality. Witness the ways in which the significant support characters maintain their own sanity and well-being as they cope with the daily situation. This novel is a painful, haunting vision of a prevalent disease, which at this time, has no good outcome, yet it also provides hope and resiliency to know we are able to 'walk our loved ones home!'"

    Virgie Denucci, Off the Beaten Path Bookstore, Steamboat Springs, CO
  • "For Pru and Spence Robin life is both complex and sublime. A gifted son, a prodigal daughter, a chorus of colorful friends and colleagues: a kaleidoscope of human connection. As these characters begin to age, author Joshua Henkin shows us how love endures the challenges that come. Witty and heartbreaking, often at the same time, MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS arrives at a time when readers long most for compassion. The novel reveals how family bonds emerge and grow in most unexpected ways. A delicate reminder that every moment has value, because every memory eventually fades."

    Mary McBride, Rainy Day Books, Fairway, KS
  • "Rushed through another ARC to get to Morningside Heights and wasn't disappointed in the least!"

    Debbie Sullivan, The Book Oasis, Stoneham, MA
  • "This poignant novel tells the story of Pru and her romance and then marriage to the young brilliant Shakespeare professor Spence. Their family life with a daughter Sarah and Spence’s son Arlo from an earlier marriage is fraught with the tensions of a blended family and ex-spouse. After three decades of marriage, Spence falls into early on-set dementia and Pru struggles as she becomes his care giver. We also follow Sarah as she becomes a doctor, and Arlo, after several misadventures in employment, becomes wealthy after investing in biotech. Joshua Henkin deftly renders each character with humor and empathy that one feels a part of the family. It will stay with you long after you finish the last page."

    Angela King, Sausalito Books by the Bay, Sausalito, CA
  • "I loved reading about the life of Pru spanning 30 years. I was so connected to her character and felt I lived the love, loss, forgotten identity, heartbreak, and ultimate new lease on life as she experienced them. This reads like an Ann Tyler novel and I can't wait to see it at our bookstore!"

    Elizabeth Barnhill, Fabled Bookshop & Café, Waco, TX
  • "A moving portrayal of a marriage and family in crisis, MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS follows the unraveling of Columbia professor Spence Robin's life and career when he's diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer's. It's also a love letter to caregivers, as Spence's wife Pru and Ginny, the no-nonsense caretaker she hires, struggle to help Spence maintain dignity and control in the face of the aggressive disease."

    Jhoanna Belfer, Bel Canto Books, Long Beach, CA
  • "In MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS, Pru Steiner’s life begins to crumble as Spence, her brilliant college professor husband, slides slowly into confusion. When the son from his previous marriage moves in, Spence’s past tangles with a newly uncertain future. The realization that something is terribly and irrevocably wrong with her husband sets Pru adrift in her own life, seeking comfort and stability in the embrace of another man. A deeply compassionate story of marriage and the unexpected course of love, MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS is beautifully rendered -- tragic, tender and wise. Joshua Henkin’s intelligent novel will generate the best kinds of book club conversations. Highly recommended."

    Ann Woodbeck, Excelsior Bay Books, Excelsior, MN
  • "Morningside Heights is a brutally glorious account chronicling the typical American family. It is an honest tale of Pru and her husband, Spence and their 30 marriage and all that life throws at you. No one gets through life without scars and Joshua Henkin's story eloquently and gracefully illustrates these hardships though love, obligation, friendships, and doing whatever it takes. Bravo to Henkin! This is a book with filled with heart, compassion, empathy, and a story you'll want to share with your parents, your children, your friends. Morningside Heights is a masterpiece of the lives we all are leading and the hope that comes of the despair."

    Marilyn Robbins, BookBar, Denver, CO
  • "Whether you want it to or not, loving someone changes you. Joshua Henkin's newest novel, Morningside Heights, is a captivating family story that examines the love between husband and wife, father and child, mother and daughter. When literature professor Spence Robin starts exhibiting signs of early-onset Alzheimer's disease, the impact on his wife, son, and daughter plays out differently for everyone. Henkin is a gifted writer whose nuanced prose is a delight to read."

    Rachel Watkins, Avid Bookshop, Athens, GA
  • "This is a character-driven novel that shows the messiness of life, the tender moments and the losses that alter every dream. Henkin expertly explores the ebbs and flows of the Robin
    family. I especially appreciated how each member wears many hats; parent, sibling, child and partner and how those relationships mold who they become. This is a contemplative, quiet novel with no perfect ending but rather the promise of what it means to live and love. Good if you like The Most Fun We Ever Had or Anne Lamott."

    Karin Barker, Bookworm of Edwards, Edwards, CO
  • "Reading Morningside Heights gave me the same feeling as reading the late great James Salter. It explores the marriage at its center with the same sense of infinite complexity and shadow, the same taut sensuality beneath pressing everyday everyday-ness. I loved it."

    Ashley Warlick, M. Judson Booksellers, Greenville, SC
  • "Morningside Heights is a fast-paced, yet deeply intimate novel about Pru Steiner, who moved to NYC to change the world. What her plan didn’t account for was that her world could be changed by Spence Robin, her graduate school professor. What follows is a tender love story spanning more than 30 years. Joshua Henkin has written a captivating cast of characters that propel the story forward, largely because there’s a little bit of each character inside the reader; the pragmatic Pru, the witty Spence, the traveling Arlo, and the competitive Sarah, to name a few. Beyond the characters, Morningside Heights is a story of how love is tested and how our relationships are what get us through."

    Clare Donovan, River's End Bookstore, Oswego, NY
  • "Morningside Heights may be set on the Upper West Side but the book has a universal appeal. It is about being a parent, a spouse, and most of all about being human. We know what will happen in the end because we know what the diagnosis means but in writing about the journey to the end, Henkin delivers a masterful, heart-felt story about the love we have in our hearts but can't always express."

    Pat Cawiezell, Magic City Books, Tulsa, OK
  • "Lovely and moving story about a family dealing with Alzheimers. A good comp would be Jonathan Tropper -- while Joshua Henkin is less zany, he's a funny, moving writer, like a Jewish Ann Patchett. Loved this and have lots of readers who will connect."

    Mary Cotton, Newtonville Books, Newton, MA
  • "The steady ever-increasing pace of Morningside Heights reflects the pace of the insidious disease it chronicles."

    Doloris Vest, Book No Further, Roanoke, VA
  • "An intimate and tender novel about a New York family and the professor patriarch who, in a cruel twist of fate, suffers early-onset dementia. Told primarily from the view of his loving wife, who must make the painful transition of moving on from someone who still is there physically, and from the estranged son from a first failed marriage, this novel is full of well-rounded, sympathetic and often funny characters, navigating through tragic circumstances together."

    Keith Vient, Politics & Prose, Washington, DC
  • "Morningside Heights is a lovely novel. The characters, especially Pru, are well constructed and fully realized. A tender take on a difficult subject - I will happily recommend this to readers of all ages, although older readers may especially appreciate it."

    Kathy Colvin, Titcomb's Bookshop, East Sandwich, MA
  • "Through all the events of his characters' personal and family events, Henkin earns our trust and delivers a beautiful novel."

    Don Luckham, Toadstool, Keene, NH
  • "After reading Josh Henkin’s wonderful novel, I sighed and put my hand on my heart.” Morningside Heights” is a story of love and the power of relationships. The book is just a stunning achievement. Bravo Mr. Henkin!"

    Judy de Jonge, Queen Anne Book Company, Seattle, WA
  • "At a time when human interaction is scarce, a book like MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS works like a salve to nourish the connections you ache for. The characters are beautifully written and instantly relatable. The challenges illustrative of the human condition remind us how we all suffer and need to help each other through the ups and downs of our journey. With humor and magnificent story telling, you will experience for yourself the loss, hope, acceptance and renewal that we all recognize as life."

    Julie Carlucci, Book Passage, Corte Madera, CA
  • "Throughout his career Joshua Henkin has demonstrated a unique ability to take ordinary, even mundane, situations and turn them into introspective examinations of every facet of life. He continues that tradition in MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS as the ties, trials and tribulations of the Robin family expose how blood sometimes is not enough to hold a family together and often those not related can actually be a strong part of the familial unit. This is never more evident than when the family must encounter the sorrow and burden of early onset Alzheimer’s to the patriarch. As always, the author creates characters that any reader can easily identify and empathize with as their concerns and lives are so universal. The emotions experienced by the individuals and succinct dialog create an account that portrays life in all its glory, pain, despair and hope."

    Bill Cusamano, Square Books, Oxford, MS
  • "It is hard to capture the feeling of grief when someone you love is still alive, but Joshua Henkin has managed to in Morningside Heights. When Pru Steiner's husband, the erudite Columbia professor Spence Robin, is diagnosed with Alzheimer's, their life slowly but inextricably changes. In vignettes of their lives before and after, from courting to raising their daughter and estranged son, koshering their kitchen and attending family reunions, Henkin explores what it means to love, to grieve, and to remember. Set in the historic Morningside Heights neighborhood in New York City, this story is simultaneously as evocative of its setting and characters as it is lucidly universal."

    Catie Chapman, Oxford Exchange, Tampa, FL
  • "I have not been moved like this by a book in a long time. Alzheimer's is a terrible disease to inflict on anyone but it is especially heinous when it preys upon someone as brilliant as Spence whose livelihood depends on his intelligence. Henkin has done an amazing job of creating characters that are refreshingly real; their relationships to each other and their response to Spence's diagnosis made me feel as if I was intruding on a private moment. This isn't an action packed novel but I still felt a punch in the gut all the same. This is a special book that needs to be shared and I can't wait to be the one to share it."

    Aimee Rankin, Lemuria Bookstore, Jackson, MS
  • "Morningside Heights is reminiscent of an early Anne Tyler novel. Joshua Henkin has the gift of magically writing what is often the mundane and turning it into first rate novel. I love books that "put you there.” This is another one to add to that list."

    Gayle Werner, Werner Books, Erie, PA
  • "I have no idea what it’s like to be Jewish or to be middle class in New York City. But after reading Morningside Heights, I feel like I might have a better idea. The ups and downs in this book are the same as any family might face, and the characters are likable and immediately relatable. No one is perfect here, and everyone does their best to try to love each other, as well as themselves."

    Kerry Mayer, Auntie's Bookstore, Spokane, WA
  • "A well done novel of family and the curves life throws us all."

    Sarah Bagby, Watermark Books & Cafe, Wichita, KS
  • "I love complex characters in a well done family drama! This book does complexity and makes it look so undaunting. As we jump between characters and time, the journey we are taken on as readers is so beautiful and captivating. I was truly invested in this book and each of the characters lives. Such a gem!"

    Shane Mullen, Left Bank Books, St. Louis, MO
  • "Henkin’s story wound to places familiar and completely surprising so effortlessly that each character’s world came flooding into my skull, my emotions turned up to eleven. A brilliantly unpredictable book - much more than a family dealing with the confusion of Alzheimer’s, but also of 'family.'"

    Steve Salardino, Skylight Books, Los Angeles, CA
  • "I couldn't put MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS down! Joshua Henkin's writing is amazing - he tells complete paragraphs in the word craft of one sentence. The novel centers around Spence Robin, a much-lauded Columbia University professor who develops early Alzheimer’s. But, the main character (imho) is his wife Pru and her relationships with all the people in her orbit. This story shows Pru's changing but unceasing love of her husband, her daughter and step-son, and her faith. Bring tissues!"

    Dawn Rennert, Concord Bookshop, Concord, MA
  • "I loved this powerful novel about relationships and family. It’s a novel that will stick with me always. Thankful for the ARC!"

    Miranda Berdahl, Wind City Books, Casper, WY
  • "Morningside Heights is a beautiful and tragic novel that weaves the lives of characters who truly feel like real connections you've made. It takes you on the devastating journey that some are made to go through where they will have to mourn the loss of a loved one as they slowly fade away before their time. But picking up the pieces of their life is just as important, and Henkin really makes you feel the transformative crucible that a person has to endure before and after such an experience."

    Josh Lucey, Page 158 Books, Wake Forest, NC
  • "In Morningside Heights, Joshua Henkin beautifully explores the human condition with rich heartwarming language. This is a story of family dynamics, those that occur naturally and those that we create and living with the consequences of other people’s actions."

    Julia Green, Front Street Books, Alpine, TX
  • "Morningside Heights begins with deceptive simplicity: Graduate student Pru Steiner falls in love with, then marries, her Shakespeare professor, Spence Robin. By the time we get to the tragic core of the book—Spence’s early-onset Alzheimer’s—Henkin has reminded us that no relationships are simple, no families are without their complicated back and front stories, and that even characters as sympathetic as Pru and Spence are not without their flaws. That we feel so empathic toward Henkin’s fictional characters is one part of the book’s brilliance. The other is the way he compels us to consider the emphemerality of, and the importance of empathy in, our own non-fictional lives."

    Ezra Goldstein, Community Bookstore, Brooklyn, NY
  • "What are the obligations of love, of family? When Spence Robin, brilliant professor and Shakespeare scholar, is stricken with early onset Alzheimer's, his wife Pru, daughter Sarah and estranged son Arlo must find a new way forward with their relationships with Spence. Is it , for example, infidelity for Pru to seek out physical comfort and companionship to combat her loneliness if the man she married is essentially no longer there? Joshua Henkin approaches this subject with compassion and an unvarnished honesty that is a true pleasure to read."

    Jessie Martin, Nicola's Books, Ann Arbor, MI
  • "When I truly love a book, when I become enraptured in the process of reading it, however engaged I am, the experience is heightened by the diffuse meta-awareness that I am reading a great book. Such was my experience of Morningside Heights. Joshua Henkin’s novel felt to me like words carved into a glass slate, by which I mean that readers are gently guided from one incredibly vivid scene or conversation to another, but the spaces between them are allowed to breathe and resonate. The characters are the same way: recognizable, relatable, but also occasionally mysterious; living and breathing. In other words, Morningside Heights is not a work of strict realism, it has been filtered through an artist’s mind and vision, but it feels so utterly true that the degree of artistry is hidden. As I finished the book an adjective that I’d been searching for finally occurred to me: this novel is Chekhovian, and that, I think, is just about the highest praise I can give a work of literature."

    Keith Mosman, Powell's Books, Portland, OR
  • "A compassionate and engrossing novel, MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS tells the story of a family of strong personalities who are forced to reevaluate their long-entrenched roles when their lives are upended by the shock of one member’s cognitive decline. When Pru fell in love with Spence, her dashing young Shakespeare professor, she traded in her own grand dreams to be a step-mother, mother, and his greatest support. Now that Spence has been diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s, the cruelties of this disease strips away all pretense and forces Pru and her children to evaluate their lives, their bonds to each other, and what they need to get through this together. A moving portrait of the evolution of a family as they navigate both the heartbreak of dementia and the true meaning of love."

    Luisa Smith, Book Passage, Corte Madera, CA
  • "A scholar who lived the life of the mind suffers the ultimate tragedy: surrendering that mind. Henkin manages this difficult tale nimbly and thoughtfully by moving back and forth in time, introducing different characters and perspectives, and offering a clear-eyed, passionate perspective of perseverance."

    Mike Hare, Northshire Bookstore, Saratoga Springs, NY
  • "The compassion with which Henkin writes of the familial and spousal love takes us gently through the stages of beginnings and endings. When an unexpected path presents itself to Pru and her husband Spence, the strength of their love takes Pru on a journey that no one plans for when taking their marriage vows. A touching generational symphony that brings the reader to the unavoidable and heart-breaking end with such a light touch, grief and sadness will be a flicker that will not linger, leading to a warm and satisfying conclusion."

    Terri Corning, R.J. Julia Booksellers, Madison, CT
  • "When you find yourself pausing multiple times to say, This is a really good book, you know you've found a special story. The devastation of early-onset dementia is told so honestly and compassionately, especially as it ravages a brilliant mind. A complicated parent/child relationship has lifelong and far reaching effects on all family members, testing bonds and patience. But in the end when memory is stolen, love endures."

    Nancy Baenen, Arcadia Books, Spring Green, WI
  • "Morningside Heights makes you fall in love with a family; it shows you its genesis, dynamics, and the microscopic sinew that holds the unit together. Each character of the family is so nuanced you can't but help celebrating their triumphs and mourning their loses. This book showed me it's possible to have your heart break and become whole simultaneously. It's a true treasure."

    Conner Horak, BookBar, Denver, CO
  • "Familial love - and all its discontents - is at the heart of this tender novel by Joshua Henkin. While still in graduate school Pru Steiner falls in love with one of her professors, Spence Robin. Thirty years of marriage later and the once-brilliant professor is diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer's disease, leaving Pru, their daughter Sarah and Arlo, Spence's son from his first marriage, to pick up the pieces of a life gone awry. Despite the subject matter there's little in the way of sentimentality - instead it's realistic, poignant, compassionate and utterly readable."

    Jude Burke-Lewis, Square Books, Oxford, MS
  • "Morningside Heights is a keenly observed and moving story of an imperfect family as it copes with a devastating twist of fate."

    Gillian Kohli, Wellesley Books, Wellesley, MA
  • "I really enjoyed the book - the pace was just right for a family drama set in New York. The outsider-insider angle is always one I'm aware of when reading books that take place in the city. I found the characters' conflicts universal, the father-son antagonism a familiar sentiment laced with new insight, and the writing to be direct, readable and well crafted. It's worth the enthusiasm and buzz!"

    Nicole Magistro, Bookworm of Edwards, Edwards, CO
  • "Morningside Heights is a deeply sensitive portrayal of familial love and marriage that begins with a ride on a moped, and ends through the fluttering curtain of Alzheimer’s. Pru and Spence Robin's life in New York is marked by the momentous and the ordinary, growing more deeply familiar to the reader with every progressive page. This novel grew on me in the way that it exposed the quiet face of love over time. Perhaps this is why Pru's courage and dedication was so very affecting for me. Strongly recommended to readers who enjoy well flushed out characters and the dramatic landscape of families in evolution."

    Nancy Scheemaker, Northshire, Manchester Center, VT
  • "Henkin's latest solidifies his standing as a bard of the ordinary, the everyday, and the complications of family life. This profound and compulsively readable novel will sneak up and surprise you, with its warmth, wisdom, and wit."

    John Francisconi, McNally Jackson Books, New York, NY
  • "Wrought with moral dilemmas on love, marriage and family, Henkin's new novel explores the complex intimacies of growing up and aging; wondering in hindsight if you're making and have made the right choices for your own life and for those you love the most. Infinitely empathetic, Morningside Heights reminds you just how finite our lives are, and how important everyone in it is, even those we feel we may have abandoned."

    Alex Bell, Northshire Bookstore, Saratoga Springs, NY
  • "The story of Pru and Spence starts with a young girl falling in love with her teacher, a brilliant professor. They marry and embark on a relatively typical life together with Pru in the role of supportive help-mate and Spence continuing his role as the creative, successful, teacher whose students clamor to take his classes. Over the course of the marriage, Spence develops Alzheimer's and Pru's role changes to be his caretaker as the disease becomes more and more debilitating. The story of Pru and Spence evolves into Pru's story as she cares for and works to help Spence through difficult days, engages with their daughter and Spence's son from a previous marriage, and navigates through an opportunity for a new relationship."

    Camille Kovach, Completely Booked, Murrysville, PA
  • "I read this in 2 sittings (and only because outside forces prevented me from reading it in one sitting) and I've been thinking--and dreaming--about these characters ever since I finished. A poignant love letter to marriage and family, warts and all; a thought-provoking examination of faithfulness and loyalty especially when the going gets tough. And all with the ever-changing and ever-constant New York City backdrop."

    Jennifer Gwydir, Blue Willow Bookshop, Houston, TX
  • "In Joshua Henkin's engrossing and moving novel MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS we meet a family in the midst of a devastating diagnosis. The patriarch, Spence, a professor and leading voice in literature has Alzheimer's. We follow the people closest to him as they witness Spence losing himself. This novel has one of the best depictions of Alzheimer's and the effects on the patient's loved ones I've ever read. It's also a fascinating study in the power dynamics of a loving, co-dependent couple put under immense stress. This book is filled with well-developed characters you will fall in love with and cheer for. Hopeful, honest and heartbreaking at the same time."

    Chelsea Bauer, Union Ave Books, Knoxville, TN
  • "Morningside Heights is a tender reflection on the ways we experience loss in the present, through its main character Pru, who must come to terms with her life when her husband, a star Shakespeare professor at Columbia University, is diagnosed with Alzheimer's at a young age. While the subject matter is devastating, in the slow way that cognitive decline can be, the characters are well-written and memorable and ultimately, leave you with hope and the reminder that life goes on and loss is a part of it. Joshua Henkin's new novel is a meaningful homage to its namesake, the neighborhood of Morningside Heights, but also to the lives of the people who inhabit it."

    Althea Lamel, Book Culture, New York, NY
  • "Pru dropped out of Harvard to marry her brilliant Shakespeare professor, basking in his academic glory and accolades. Along with supporting his career, she agrees to help him build a relationship with his son from a previous relationship who had little or no little contact with his father through the years. We follow the voice of his wife and his son as they reflect the past and the shift in the present as the professor begins to show signs of dementia. The author’s moving portrayal of how a family struggles while coping with the gradual decline of a loved one and the devastation of its impact are heartbreaking yet life-affirming."

    Diana, Forever Books, St. Joseph, MI
  • "Joshua Henkin's characters draw you in and keep the reader hooked. Wonderful depiction of place."

    Jane Estes, Lark and Owl Booksellers, Georgetown, TX
  • "Pru know she’s a cliché when she begins dating Spence, her grad school professor. What follows is a 30-year marriage that is gutted by a relentless disease. Henkin has created a fascinating family dynamic of misunderstood intentions, disappointments, surprises and bad decisions that will place you squarely in its midst."

    Alice Meyer, Beaverdale Books,Des Moines, IA
  • "Morningside Heights is a book that reminds you why you fell in love with reading. The crisp and sincere storytelling of Henkin captures the feelings we so often struggle to articulate. This story is about the unwavering will to fight for the relationships we deserve. It is about not giving up on those we love. The story of this unorthodox family moves readers to consider what it means to be deeply tied to one another. Morningside Heights speaks directly to the hearts and minds of readers--this book is meant to be shared."

    Jared Childress, Capital Books, Sacramento, CA
  • "A seemingly complicated story about a family brought to life with simplicity, authenticity and compassion. In his fourth novel, Henkin keeps everything from getting too busy with poignant prose. He doesn't overstep but chooses to respect his readers. There is no soapboxing or maudlin messaging. Even while venturing in to deep areas like infidelity and Alzheimer's disease -- Henkin chooses instead, graceful, human, kind, even funny touches. I felt sadness and despair, happiness and hope. The story, the rich character development stayed with me. Morningside Heights makes me wonder what this family is up to now? This story left me feeling hopeful. It reassured me that despite common challenges, the world doesn't always have to be upside down."

    Jennifer, Snowbound Books, Marquette, MI
  • "Joshua Henkin has written a beautiful novel about the messiness of life and the unexpected turns it takes that fill us with joy, sadness and hope. Pru Steiner is a graduate student who ends up falling in love and marrying her renowned Shakespeare professor, Spence Robin, leading to a life with a happy and gratifying family until Spence is faced with early onset Alzheimer’s disease. When Spence’s son from a previous marriage reenters their lives relationships are further complicated. As Pru deals with the heartbreak and isolation of becoming caregiver rather than lover she finds out that even when life doesn’t quite turn out as planned there is still a world of possibility and love. With a character who feels as real as your next door neighbor, this novel is poignant and filled with love. Sure to leave readers with a sweet appreciation of this chaotic thing we call life!"

    Betsy Von Kehrens, Bookworm of Omaha, Omaha, NE
  • "Morningside Heights is the perfect example of a quiet novel done right. In Morningside Heights, Joshua Henkin expertly details the relationships, grief, and lives of one family with just enough detail and emotion to hit you right in the heart. Henkin gets to the heart of each of his characters: flawed, sometimes horrifying, deeply empathetic, and lovable--reminiscent of ourselves and our loved ones. Hopeful, heart wrenching, and tender - Morningside Heights is sure to stay in your heart and head long after its final pages."

    Genni Eccles, Flyleaf Books, Chapel Hill, NC
  • "A well-written, bittersweet examination of all the facets of family life as a woman's husband is diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer's. The various POV's of his wife, Pru, daughter Sarah, and estranged son, Arlo, capture this splendidly. Each of these characters are distinctive and affected in various ways from Spence's diagnosis - each POV giving a slice of the impact on this family as Spence deteriorates. Henkin takes you through a whole range of emotions in this beautiful yet heart-wrenching family drama. This book has plenty of elements we can all relate to, leading to plenty of discussion and reflection of one's life."

    Josh Clark, The Tattered Cover, Denver, CO
  • "Morningside Heights by Joshua Henkin has something for everyone. Above all, it's a love story, or, more accurately, many love stories. What is marriage, parenthood, friendship, if not a daily choice to love the people in your life? Each day tells a different story of that love. Henkin's story follows Pru Steiner, an intelligent woman with aspirations to become a writer, and her professor Spence Robin. The two fall in love, get married, have a daughter, and in the midst of all that change, Pru's aspirations shift. When Spence is diagnosed with Early Onset Alzheimer's, Pru's choice to love and care for her husband each day gets more difficult. Morningside Heights is beautifully written, weaving together perspectives from Pru, their daughter Sarah, and Spence's son from his first marriage, Arlo. There are moments of utter heartbreak followed quickly by moments of hilarity and awkwardness. Human stories are complex - just like love."

    Margaret Leonard, Dotters Books, Eau Claire, WI
  • "Henkin's Morningside Heights pulled me in and I felt like I knew all of the characters in the book by time I finished. Professor Spence Robin could have even been one of my professors! Pru and Spence have a complicated family life (don't we all!) and I love the way that the book is crafted around those characters. He takes a difficult topic, Alzheimer's, and has created a family who rallies around that disease. The reader is taken along on so many hardships and trials of the family but by the end we just want to give them all a hug and say thank you for their grace and kindness, despite all that has happened."

    Sue Post, Homer Bookstore, Homer, AK
  • "Morningside Heights was touching and it was real, true to life. First the fact that Spence lost his parents to cancer and a heart attack was just like my life, and young too. Secondly, I had a relationship with an adjunct professor after the class ended, we were both single too, but he was just 6 years older than me. Yet I got it. And you handled Spence's deterioration with tenderness and compassion as the aunt that finished raising me in New York now has dementia so it hit home. The affair is believable too. Alzheimer's is difficult to deal with and it is human to do so, even as it might not be technically right. I enjoyed it. Thank you for sharing it with me!"

    Diane McGuire, Valley Bookseller, Stillwater, MN
  • "Toss a pebble into the river of a book, and its ripples - if you're lucky - will continue long after you've finished reading. "Morningside Heights," from Joshua Henkin, is one of those books that'll make you lucky. Lucky to have read it, lucky to have spent time with its characters. It forces you to contemplate the choices you might make if the person closest to you had to reckon with the early debilitation of dementia. It allows you to see how, in Henkin's supremely capable hands, lives are touched and forever changed when the ripples from this circumstance surge outwards, touching family, friends, lovers, and enemies. "Morningside Heights" is sorrowful and hard, but also breathtaking and beautiful."

    Nick Petrulakis, Diesel Bookstore, Del Mar, CA
  • "Charming, tender, and warm-hearted, Morningside Heights illuminates an intimate world behind the prestige of a lauded academic in the space of just a few city blocks. Steeped in the nuance of fragile family dynamics and the heartbreak of losing a loved one to Alzheimers, I recommend this for anyone who loves a book that makes them feel with their whole heart."

    Colleen Callery, Books Are Magic, Brooklyn, NY
  • "I loved this novel so much. It's a charming, slyly funny, sometimes sad story which is inventively told as we follow Pru Steiner, who as a young midwestern practicing Jewish girl meets and falls in love with her brilliant Columbia graduate professor, Spence Robin. She abandons her academic pursuits, they marry, have a daughter, and even for a time take in Spence's estranged son from his first marriage but her world is upended when thirty years later Spence starts to succumb to early onset Alzheimers. In the end, this is a powerful meditation on marriage and family filled with warmth, heartache, and hope."

    Cody Morrison, Square Books, Oxford, MS
  • "Morningside Heights is the story of family and relationships and the love between husband and wife, parents and children, and siblings. We meet Pru and follow her as she meets Spence and sacrifices her own academics and career to be with him. They marry and have a family, but it eventually becomes apparent that Spence’s quirkiness may be something more. When he is diagnosed with early onset Alzheimers Disease, we watch the family struggle with the inhumanity of the illness; Spence is forced out of a career that he loves as he slowly loses control of his mind, his body, his dignity, his self. Most of this is viewed through the lens of Pru’s thoughts, but we are also introduced to their daughter, her stepson, and Spence’s caregivers. These characters, drawn so realistically, interact in the complicated, functionally dysfunctional ways that families do, experiencing hopes and disappointments, jealously, love and loss, and come to terms with the challenges, indignities, and heartbreak the disease brings. Morningside Heights is the story of life, with all its messy parts, and an ode to love and what we will do for the people we hold dearest to our heart."

    Lisa Driban, Hockessin Bookshelf, Hockessin, DE
  • "A twisty family tale, which is always right up my alley."

    Sarah Hutton, Village Books, Bellingham, WA
  • "When a good friend is telling you the story of her marriage and family, you sit forward and lean in. You're surprised by all the twists and turns the story takes (really sometimes it can be quite suspenseful because people lives aren't linear until a story is told). You celebrate all the successes and empathize with the hardships. And the story is well told because you love your friend and you empathize every step of the way with her and when she finishes, you mourn with her and and know that even though it's the end of this particular story, she will move forward and have other stories to tell you. This is the way of Morningside Heights. Joshua Henkin's story of a marriage and it's all too true ups and downs engages you so fully that when the story is over, as heartbreaking as it is, you'll wish he would tell you more."

    Pam Cady, University Bookstore, Seattle, WA
  • "Life has been good to Pru. Although not originally planned, her marriage to Spencer Robin, professor and grand writer, has given her thirty years of the good life, including a lovely daughter, now away at medical school. And then Alzheimer’s shows up and contented wife and mother, Pru, must become caretaker for a man who no longer has the skill and talent to continue his writing career. Can her love for this man give her the strength to keep going even though he is no longer the same man she married? Joshua Henkin understands human nature far better than most. His obvious concern for the deep thoughts and desires of his characters sets his stories apart and makes him a respected and popular author. There is so much warmth and understanding in these pages, you’ll be sad when the last page is turned because you won’t want it to end. I suggest you make time to read it slowly, to savor every word. Thank you, Joshua. Morningside Heights is well worth the journey!"

    Linda Bond, Auntie’s Bookstore, Spokane, WA
  • "My attachment to this haunting novel was immediate; I was hooked from the first sentence on. There is a whole cast of engaging, complicated characters who we see struggle with the challenges of what life has presented them, with the consequences of their decisions and actions on themselves and on others. Central to this cast, are Spence, a celebrated Shakespearean scholar at Columbia, and his somewhat younger wife and former student, Pru. We are privy to what they both give up and gain from sharing a life together through the years, but fate delivers them a blow that changes everything when Spence is diagnosed with early on-set Alzheimer’s. The unimaginable heartbreak for Pru of coping with the loss of what they had, coupled with the demands of becoming a caregiver is lovingly and expertly captured by Henkin. This is a very emotional read, but there’s something uplifting about all of the examples of imperfect people struggling to become better, better friends, better partners, better siblings and better parents—about the resilience of the human spirit. And some days, the victory of getting through the day will just be to go into a Chinese restaurant and order takeout dinner. This is the sort of novel that stays with you long after you close the cover."

    Jeanne Joesten, Literati Bookstore, Ann Arbor, MI
  • "Morningside Heights was a particular delight the will hook you from page one. Joshua Henkin wastes no time bringing you into the world of this novel, and makes it all the more difficult to put down. This is a book that tests the limits of love and shows how prismatic the word can be. The time I spent with the Stein-Robin family was treasured."

    Kar Johnson, Green Apple Books, San Francisco, CA
  • "Henkin does a remarkable job capturing the heartbreak of a terrible disease, both the beautiful and terrible realities of a long and successful marriage, and the complications of family."

    Hannah Harlow, Book Shop of Beverly Farms, Beverly, MA
  • "This book blew me away. Henkin has devoted so much time and care to these characters, and it shines through in this story. I was as invested in these characters’ relationships as the characters themselves were. This is a family drama without pettiness or insincerity, and it reminded me that while we all cope with tragedy in different ways, we can still find connection through love and memory. (Even when memory starts to fail.) We try our best, we make our mistakes, and we learn something each day. Well-crafted fiction like this is wonderful because it can show us new experiences and feelings, but it can also be a testament to the fact that we are not alone. Early-onset Alzheimer’s is a cruel disease, but there is still plenty of space for love and tenderness."

    Katie Formosi, Copper Dog Books, Beverly, MA