“In deft, clear prose that reminds of both Cheryl Strayed and Michael Ondaatje, Janet Clare’s debut explores—in riveting, unflinching detail—a woman’s search for connection and meaning. In Lilly’s journey, with unfamiliar family in unfamiliar territory, we have a protagonist wanting in the ways we are all wanting: to find that thing that will make us complete. There are depths in these characters and I loved every word.” — Christian Kiefer, author of The Animals

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When I first started to write a novel I thought it was the hardest thing I could imagine doing, but it was too late. I had fallen in love with making things up, taking the time to research and discover my characters, continually surprised by what they say and do.

Originally from New York, I live in Los Angeles with my husband. I studied at UC Berkeley and UCLA, and I’ve had short fiction and essays published online and anthologized. Time Is The Longest Distance is my first novel.

“In Janet Clare’s impressive debut, Time Is the Longest Distance, Lilly, a restless New Yorker, is summoned by her mother back to Los Angeles to discover she’s in fact the product of a secret fling her mother once had with a rugged Australian.

“Following her mother’s footsteps to the Antipodes, Lilly tracks down her mercurial birth father and lights upon more than she could have imagined.

In propulsive, exacting strokes, Clare deftly moves us through a time out of time in a faraway place. A taut, compelling adventure, exploring little known landscapes, and the depth and breadth of a woman’s yearning.”

— David Francis, author of Stray Dog Winter, Wedding Bush Road, Agapanthus Tango


Book Soup reading with David Francis