The Woman Upstairs by Claire Messud


Teacher Nora Eldridge is a nice woman. She’s tried hard to be that all her life. Then Nora meets student Reza Shahid and his parents and falls in love with each of them. As she sheds her notions of what she ought to be, her internal world and society’s expectations collide. By the author of The Emperor’s Children, this book is a seething depiction of an angry woman.

The Woman Upstairs, Claire Messud, $30. Available at and

Interview: Claire Messud wonders why women can’t be angry