Halsey Street

Halsey Street A modern day story of family loss and renewal Halsey Street captures the deeply human need to belong not only to a place but to one another Penelope Grand has scrapped her failed career as an artis

  • Title: Halsey Street
  • Author: Naima Coster
  • ISBN: null
  • Page: 264
  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • A modern day story of family, loss, and renewal, Halsey Street captures the deeply human need to belong not only to a place but to one another.Penelope Grand has scrapped her failed career as an artist in Pittsburgh and moved back to Brooklyn to keep an eye on her ailing father She s accepted that her future won t be what she d dreamed, but now, as gentrification has compA modern day story of family, loss, and renewal, Halsey Street captures the deeply human need to belong not only to a place but to one another.Penelope Grand has scrapped her failed career as an artist in Pittsburgh and moved back to Brooklyn to keep an eye on her ailing father She s accepted that her future won t be what she d dreamed, but now, as gentrification has completely reshaped her old neighborhood, even her past is unrecognizable Old haunts have been razed, and wealthy white strangers have replaced every familiar face in Bed Stuy Even her mother, Mirella, has abandoned the family to reclaim her roots in the Dominican Republic That took courage It s also unforgivable.When Penelope moves into the attic apartment of the affluent Harpers, she thinks she s found a semblance of family and maybe even love But her world is upended again when she receives a postcard from Mirella asking for reconciliation As old wounds are reopened, and secrets revealed, a journey across an ocean of sacrifice and self discovery begins.An engrossing debut, Halsey Street shifts between the perspectives of these two captivating, troubled women Mirella has one last chance to win back the heart of the daughter she d lost long before leaving New York, and for Penelope, it s time to break free of the hold of the past and start navigating her own life.

    One thought on “Halsey Street”

    1. In the end, I wanted to shake both Penelope and Mirella hard, and then pull them into a hug. Both beautifully flawed, complex, and dynamic characters. I'm still gathering my thoughts on this one, but I can't wait for everyone to read this come January.-----Full review 12/23: Looking back, it is fitting that I binge-read Halsey Street the same weekend that I binge-watched She's Gotta Have It, the Spike Lee-directed television series based on his film from the 1980s. Both feature black Millennial [...]

    2. From my editor's letter:If you are bilingual like I am, you know that your brain can work on two parallel paths simultaneously. Both paths tell the same story but in a different way. It’s no coincidence that I was thinking about this experience while devouring Naima Coster’s debut novel, Halsey Street. The main character, Penelope Grand, flits between parallel worlds—her mother’s in the Dominican Republic and her father’s of jazz and record shops and bars where everyone knows your name [...]

    3. Naima Coster’s Halsey Street is an ode to all art forms. The author’s voice is fresh and powerful, and their literary craft is truly exquisite, one that is descriptive without being verbose. Coster’s skills allows the carefully conjured images to shine, whether in the dimming light of a New York sunset or the midday sun of a Caribbean isle.Set against the backdrop of a changing Brooklyn, this contemporary novel is a no-holds barred critique of gentrification, as well as a passionate, nuanc [...]

    4. 3.75 stars. Halsey Street had all of the elements that I love in a good novel: a woman of color navigating the world, complicated family dynamics (especially mother/daughter relationships), and multiple character perspectives, but still something was missing. Each of the main characters were deeply flawed which is not a bad thing, but they each remained selfish and unchanged throughout the story. The structure of the book was a bit disorienting to me - I believe I would have connected more to th [...]

    5. 4.5First published at The Shrinkette.Thanks so much to Netgalley and Little A Books for providing me this ARC in exchange for an honest review.Plot: Penelope Grand is a young black failing artist who moves back home from Pittsburg to take care of her ailing father, Ralph. Her old neighborhood has been gentrified and taken over by affluent white people, and her mother Mirella left them to return to the Dominican Republic. So when Penny moves into the attic of the wealthy Harpers, she hopes for so [...]

    6. Halsey Street wasn't a book I loved from the beginning, but rather, a story that caught my attention about 1/3 of the way through. It's about so many things which may have been the source of my initial feelings about it. However, what finally pulled me in is Naima Coster's masterful decision to mix past and present perspectives as the story progressed. (view spoiler)[It wasn't until reading glimpses from Mirella's point of view that the everything began to really come alive for me. What I found [...]

    7. Wow 12 hours.uldnt put it down.A book has never done this to me I'm from Williamsburg Born in Park Slope and moved here when i was 3 This book had a heartbeat. The cover and title drew me in In tears Superb.

    8. “Halsey Street” is the first book I’ve read about Black families since “The Turner House,” and it was worth it.

    9. Halsey Street is an unflinching look into broken family relationships and the reality of gentrification. Set in the rapidly "progressing" Bed-Stuy in Brooklyn, Halsey Street follows Penelope, a failed artist, as she returns home to care for her estranged father after he falls ill. As she attempts to find stability in her return to her old neighborhood and in her landlord's family, her life is upended again after receiving a postcard from her mother, who abandoned the family years before. At time [...]

    10. I'd rate this 2.5 stars. The book isn't terrible, but the combined effects of the writing's very slow pace and the awfulness of the characters' actions to one another made the story feel like a chore. This was Kindle First read.The author accurately captures the sometimes tedium of everyday life and family obligations. And I enjoyed reading about the Dominican Republic, Brooklyn, and the controversies of gentrification. Some readers are gushing about the book's emotional subject of mother-daught [...]

    11. Halsey Street is a strong debut novel that will cause you to ponder about family, motherhood and what community really means. Although it might ruffle feathers especially on the topic of gentrification, Halsey Street is compelling, necessary and thought provoking. Full review at afomaumesi/2018/01/01/

    12. As I closed the last pages to Halsey Street i find myself in tears, looking around at my own stark roomfilled with boxes I'm not sure I'll unpack as I don't know my next move. Halsey Street is a reminder that however close to thirty I am, I don't have to be done. I can be a work of art, I can be imperfect,the art will come, even after we’ve given up on it.That line stuck out to me:“She didn’t know how long he would remain patient with her, or how long she had before he realized her bad moo [...]

    13. So amazing. Listened to this one on Audible, which I think may have only enhanced the experience (can't minimize the importance of a good narrator). More of a review to come, but this was a memorable book. I'm so excited that this author seems to have only just begun. I hope she's actively working on another novel.

    14. I'd been circling this book for a while. My reading tastes change by the year. Reviews today can be so negative or ambiguous and I didn't want to invest time in another book that I wouldn't finish but from the time I started playing it, it took me 1.5 days to listen to 12 hours.This book was different to me, gritty, real, palpable and real life. I felt like a voyeur into Penelope's life and struggles. They were wonderfully complex and intricate and human. The story of her and her parents can be [...]

    15. Some books simply speak to you. That was the case for me with Halsey Street by Naima Coster. Penelope's story of leaving Pittsburgh and returning home to Brooklyn to keep an eye on her father, whose health has deteriorated almost as much as their family home on Halsey Street. The Brooklyn Penelope returns to is undergoing gentrification. All the old businesses, including the record shop her father owned, have disappeared, as have many of the neighbours she knew, replaced now by hipsters and upwa [...]

    16. I tried, and then I tried some more to slog thru this book's main characters' unhappiness and selfishness because I was sure there would be growth and reconciliation eventually. 68% through I gave up, and I never give up on a book. I love reading immensely. I couldn't relate to the characters. I couldn't understand how they were supposed to be strong, good women when they were so petty, immature and selfish and antisocial, yet so stupidly dependent on someone else to tell them they are worthy wh [...]

    17. I don't like these peopleThe writing is excellent. The references to gentrification, art school, Dominicans in NYC, etc. are all well explored. However, except for a child and a bartender, this is a cast of the most (both quantity and quality) self-centered people I have ever encountered in a novel, and they don't make much progress toward redemption.

    18. This is not a feel-good book to read on Christmas but here I was, unable to put it down.One might say that it does have a suitable theme however - the glacially slow dissolving of lifelong defenses, born of misunderstanding AND understanding within a family of three. We see Bed-Stuy - or a part of it - in Brooklyn change from being a neighborhood of black and brown people to being a gentrified place with white couples moving in who are yet unwilling to let their children go to school in their ne [...]

    19. Naima Coster’s debut novel centers around a family in Bed-Stuy and the Dominican Republic, whose members know loss as well as their backyards, and have learned to hold nothing sacred because of it. The POV characters, Penelope Grand and her estranged mother Mirella, are especially skeptical—of marriage, of hometown nostalgia, and even of maternity. I enjoyed reading Halsey Street right after Another Brooklyn, since they're both reflections of changing life in the borough (this time, Bed-Stuy [...]

    20. A gorgeous narrative from debut author, Naima Coster, about gentrification, Brooklyn, complex family relationships, and ultimately, home. I adored HALSEY STREET. It was one of those books that I wasn't quite sure about at first because maybe, I thought, I wouldn't relate. I don't know much about Brooklyn brownstones and I'm not a visual artist, and noI'm not black. But HALSEY STREET pulled me in and absolutely gobsmacked me.The writing is oh-so-good, the details, the pictures Coster paints with [...]

    21. Hasley Street by Naima Coster was my Kindle First pick for December. I had a difficult time getting into this book with the constant change between time periods and characters talking. I was tempted to give up on this one. Ms Coster brings to light several themes such as motherhood, relationship, love, and forgiveness. It wasn't until the very end I connect with the characters and found the book to a very dreary read that was hard to rally for any of the characters.

    22. This was an First book. The characters in this story were all very complex and real. You felt that you knew these people. But they were a group of the most unhappy, miserable people that I have encountered in a long time. Even with all of the suffering and misery, I couldn’t stop reading. There was just something about the book that I had to continue to see what would happen. The book was well written and very easy to follow. It is a story that will stay with me for a long time. I just can’ [...]

    23. PhenomalYou write the emotions that I see and feel. The paralysis that Penelope feels in life. The frustration of Mirella early on and her later regret that she can't even admit to herself. Brooklyn is also a character here,changes outlined in plain relief. I simply loverd this book.

    24. Naima Coster wrote a story that is sure to stick with you long after the last page. I was in my feelings for a full 48 hours after finishing, and I still get sad flashbacks sometimes.Penelope packed up her life in Pittsburg where she had been living for 5 years as a bartender and struggling artist and moved back to a gentrifying Brooklyn to help take care of her ill, stubborn father, Ralph. But instead of living with him on Halsey Street, she moves into the attic of the Harpers, a gentrificating [...]

    25. Very touching story with incredibly well-crafted characters - even their flaws are beautiful.This is one of those rare books that captures people perfectly - important and precious and linked to other people in ways that are both ugly and beautiful, ways that manage to make them feel both vulnerable and secure.Every person in this story could have a pretty decent standalone book of their own - to me, that's a sign of really fantastic writing. And this is her first novel! I can't wait to read mor [...]

    26. Poignant and ProvokingThis was a quick read -- one that I couldn't put down. That fact is ironic, because the characters had very few redeeming qualities and were difficult to like. Their personalities were distant and cold, and matched the winter temperatures that were present through much of the book. I wanted them to learn from their mistakes, to grow, and to release some of their anger and tension. But, though it never happened, I realized that their resistance is what made them believable. [...]

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