Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Ann Arbor.com Journalist Speaks With Eileen Pollack About "Breaking and Entering"

Jenn McKee, Entertainment Journalist for Ann Arbor.com spoke with Four Way Books author, Eileen Pollack about her latest book, Breaking and Entering.

"To get at one of the themes explored by University of Michigan professor Eileen Pollack’s engrossing new novel, “Breaking and Entering,” you need only imagine what it would be like if Rick Santorum lived next door to Barney Frank.

“Strangely enough, they’d probably take out each other’s trash,” said Pollack.

“Breaking”—which has been getting strong reviews, including one in The New York Times—focuses on a couple, Louise and Richard Shapiro, who relocate from northern California to rural Michigan after one of Richard’s patients commits suicide, and Richard accidentally starts a small forest fire.

Seemingly depressed, Richard takes a job in Michigan as a prison psychiatrist and pulls away from Louise and their young daughter, Molly, while feeling more and more drawn to a neighbor’s militia group. (This is particularly relevant because shortly after the couple moves to Michigan, the Oklahoma City bombing happens and draws attention to Michigan-based militia groups.)

Louise, for her part, tries to land a job as a school counselor, but the highly conservative school’s principal disdains Louise’s more liberal views; and after meeting an attractive Unitarian minister, Louise, feeling abandoned by Richard, begins an intense affair.

“I’m very interested in passion in all its forms: political passion, religious passion, and romantic passion, and the way in which passion is, on the one hand, something that is devoutly to be wished—a life without passion would just, I think, be very dull, and you wouldn’t know what to do with yourself, because a passion determines what you do with your life,” said Pollack. “We think of political passion as a good thing, or religious passion, and surely passion for another person. But passion is also very destructive. It’s a longing for what we can’t have.”

To continue reading the article, click here. For a copy of Breaking and Entering and to learn more about Pollack's writing, visit us online.