This week at Necessary Fiction, I reviewed The Fallback Plan, a début novel/la from Leigh Stein. The book was published by Melville House in January; it was their 200th book and was selected to mark their 10th anniversary.

Small excerpt from the review:

Luckily for the reader, Esther’s parents force her to get a job as a nanny with some family friends. But this isn’t just an ordinary family. Amy and Nate have recently lost their second child, a baby girl named Annika. They hire Esther to watch their four-year-old daughter May so that Amy can get her life back on track and start painting again.

This combination of grieving-for-a-lost-child-family and refusing-to-grow-up-Esther is tailor-made for the kind of catharsis that Esther is going to need to get herself out of her parents’ basement and back into the real world. Minor incidents transpire. Esther makes mistakes. Amy and Nate reveal secrets. Esther, thankfully, gets a glimpse of real trauma.

Read the full review here.