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A day at the beach
Helen Shulman
Adult Fiction SCHULMA

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Summary: The marriage of Gerhard and Suzannah Falktopf is already in trouble when tragedy strikes on the morning of September 11, 2001. As a quintessential downtown art couple -- he a famous choreographer, she his muse and principal dancer and now the mother of their four-year-old son -- the strains in their marriage have been kept at bay by the glamorous velocity of their lives. Though they escape harm when the planes crash into the towers, husband and wife are suddenly cast into an unpredictable psychological space that allows their buried selves, and their sharp differences, to rise to the surface. After packing up the car, and with their gorgeous young nanny in tow, they head for the safety of the Hamptons. But despite their soft landing in this cocoon of privilege, the unleashed demons will push them to their psychic limits -- so much so that by the next morning they will hardly recognize each other. Taking place over a manic twenty-four hours, A Day at the Beach is a fast-paced, razor-sharp story whose personal tragedy contains sparks of dark humor about American life pre- and post-9/11. It is a story that speaks to our memories of that day, which, for all of us in so many different ways, meant the end of a world and the birth of something new. Or so it seemed . . .

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main characters Gerhard Falktopf
Worldly; retentive; unaffectionate; being replaced at his dance company; trying to save his work from being stolen; watches the World Trade Center towers fall.

Susannah Falktopf
Age: 36
Gerhard's wife; former dancer; stay-at-home mother of her autistic son; watches the World Trade Center towers fall.

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