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The Lullaby of Polish Girls: A Novel
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Published:
Random House Publishing Group 2013
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Description
Includes an interview featuring Dagmara Dominczyk and Adriana Trigiani
A vibrant, engaging debut novel that follows the friendship of three women from their youthful days in Poland to their complicated, not-quite-successful adult lives
 
Because of her father’s role in the Solidarity movement, Anna and her parents immigrate to the United States in the 1980s as political refugees from Poland. They settle in Brooklyn among immigrants of every stripe, yet Anna never quite feels that she belongs. But then, the summer she turns twelve, she is sent back to Poland to visit her grandmother, and suddenly she experiences the shock of recognition. In her family’s hometown of Kielce, Anna develops intense friendships with two local girls—brash and beautiful Justyna and desperately awkward Kamila—and their bond is renewed every summer when Anna returns. The Lullaby of Polish Girls follows these three best friends from their early teenage years on the lookout for boys in Kielce—a town so rough its citizens are called “the switchblades”—to the loss of innocence that wrecks them, and the stunning murder that reaches across oceans to bring them back together after they’ve grown and long since left home.
 
Dagmara Dominczyk’s assured narrative flashes from the wild summers of the girls’ youth to their years of self-discovery in New York and Europe. Her writing is full of grit and guts, and her descriptions of the emotional experiences of her characters resonate with honesty. The Lullaby of Polish Girls captures the passion and drama of friendship, the immigrant’s yearning to be known, and the exquisite and wistful transformation of young women coming of age.
 
Praise for The Lullaby of Polish Girls
“A coming-of-age tale of three young Polish women [that is] brimming with teary epiphanies, betrayal and love, as well as the grit of both New York and Kielce. [It’s] Girls with a Polish accent.”—The New York Times
The Lullaby of Polish Girls will make you swoon. Dagmara Dominczyk has written a glorious debut novel inspired by her own emigration from Poland to Brooklyn with depth, intensity, humor, and grace.”—Adriana Trigiani
“An ennui-stricken actress returns to the old country—and to the friends of her youth—in Dagmara Dominczyk’s The Lullaby of Polish Girls, in which solidarity is all about summer evenings under the stars with a vodka bottle and a radio playing ‘Forever Young.’ ”Vogue
 
“Compelling . . . an original portrait of friendship and identity . . . Dominczyk uses a fresh, confident style.”People
 
“In this arresting debut novel, Polish American film and TV actress Dominczyk pays homage to her native city of Kielce while capturing the joys, insecurities, and struggles of three girlfriends coming of age. Spanning thirteen years, Dominczyk’s absorbing story is a triptych of tsknota (Polish for a kind of yearning) and a profound desire for acceptance, freedom, and home.”Booklist (starred review)
 
The Lullaby of Polish Girls is sexy and sensitive, with a raw, openhearted center. Dominczyk’s love for her complicated characters is apparent from the first page to the last, and by the novel’s end the reader cares for them just as deeply.”—Emma Straub
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Format:
Adobe EPUB eBook, Kindle Book, OverDrive Read
Street Date:
06/04/2013
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780679645993
ASIN:
B00ALBR2UO
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Citations
APA Citation (style guide)

Dagmara Dominczyk. (2013). The Lullaby of Polish Girls: A Novel. Random House Publishing Group.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Dagmara Dominczyk. 2013. The Lullaby of Polish Girls: A Novel. Random House Publishing Group.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Dagmara Dominczyk, The Lullaby of Polish Girls: A Novel. Random House Publishing Group, 2013.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Dagmara Dominczyk. The Lullaby of Polish Girls: A Novel. Random House Publishing Group, 2013. Web.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2010. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
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Needs Update?:
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Date Added:
Jun 12, 2018 17:05:12
Date Updated:
Dec 06, 2020 02:44:15
Last Metadata Check:
Nov 28, 2021 08:25:37
Last Metadata Change:
Nov 20, 2021 14:41:33
Last Availability Check:
Nov 28, 2021 08:25:40
Last Availability Change:
Jun 16, 2021 21:50:11
Last Grouped Work Modification Time:
Dec 03, 2021 02:10:37

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      • value: Fiction
      • value: immigrants
      • value: novels
      • value: Immigration
      • value: Saga
      • value: love
      • value: Coming of age
      • value: Identity
      • value: women
      • value: 20th Century
      • value: Drama
      • value: Women's Fiction
      • value: Family relationships
      • value: grief
      • value: betrayal
      • value: Contemporary
      • value: Innocence
      • value: 1980s
      • value: literature
      • value: fiction books
      • value: summer
      • value: Literary
      • value: beach books
      • value: young women
      • value: beach reads
      • value: beach novels
      • value: books for women
      • value: relationship books
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        Dagmara Dominczyk was born in Poland and immigrated to New York City at the age of seven. She has acted in numerous films, TV series, and plays. She is married to the actor Patrick Wilson, with whom she has two sons. She lives in New Jersey.

      • name: Dagmara Dominczyk
imprint
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publishDate
2013-06-04T00:00:00-04:00
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title
The Lullaby of Polish Girls
fullDescription
Includes an interview featuring Dagmara Dominczyk and Adriana Trigiani
A vibrant, engaging debut novel that follows the friendship of three women from their youthful days in Poland to their complicated, not-quite-successful adult lives
 
Because of her father’s role in the Solidarity movement, Anna and her parents immigrate to the United States in the 1980s as political refugees from Poland. They settle in Brooklyn among immigrants of every stripe, yet Anna never quite feels that she belongs. But then, the summer she turns twelve, she is sent back to Poland to visit her grandmother, and suddenly she experiences the shock of recognition. In her family’s hometown of Kielce, Anna develops intense friendships with two local girls—brash and beautiful Justyna and desperately awkward Kamila—and their bond is renewed every summer when Anna returns. The Lullaby of Polish Girls follows these three best friends from their early teenage years on the lookout for boys in Kielce—a town so rough its citizens are called “the switchblades”—to the loss of innocence that wrecks them, and the stunning murder that reaches across oceans to bring them back together after they’ve grown and long since left home.
 
Dagmara Dominczyk’s assured narrative flashes from the wild summers of the girls’ youth to their years of self-discovery in New York and Europe. Her writing is full of grit and guts, and her descriptions of the emotional experiences of her characters resonate with honesty. The Lullaby of Polish Girls captures the passion and drama of friendship, the immigrant’s yearning to be known, and the exquisite and wistful transformation of young women coming of age.
 
Praise for The Lullaby of Polish Girls
“A coming-of-age tale of three young Polish women [that is] brimming with teary epiphanies, betrayal and love, as well as the grit of both New York and Kielce. [It’s] Girls with a Polish accent.”—The New York Times
The Lullaby of Polish Girls will make you swoon. Dagmara Dominczyk has written a glorious debut novel inspired by her own emigration from Poland to Brooklyn with depth, intensity, humor, and grace.”—Adriana Trigiani
“An ennui-stricken actress returns to the old country—and to the friends of her youth—in Dagmara Dominczyk’s The Lullaby of Polish Girls, in which solidarity is all about summer evenings under the stars with a vodka bottle and a radio playing ‘Forever Young.’ ”Vogue
 
“Compelling . . . an original portrait of friendship and identity . . . Dominczyk uses a fresh, confident style.”People
 
“In this arresting debut novel, Polish American film and TV actress Dominczyk pays homage to her native city of Kielce while capturing the joys, insecurities, and struggles of three girlfriends coming of age. Spanning thirteen years, Dominczyk’s absorbing story is a triptych of tsknota (Polish for a kind of yearning) and a profound desire for acceptance, freedom, and home.”Booklist (starred review)
 
The Lullaby of Polish Girls is sexy and sensitive, with a raw, openhearted center. Dominczyk’s love for her complicated characters is apparent from the first page to the last, and by the novel’s end the reader cares for them just as deeply.”—Emma Straub
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reviews
      • premium: False
      • source: The New York Times
      • content:

        "A coming-of-age tale of three young Polish women [that is] brimming with teary epiphanies, betrayal and love, as well as the grit of both New York and Kielce. [It's] Girls with a Polish accent."

      • premium: False
      • source: People (3-1/2 stars)
      • content: "An ennui-stricken actress returns to the old country--and to the friends of her youth--in Dagmara Dominczyk's The Lullaby of Polish Girls, in which solidarity is all about summer evenings under the stars with a vodka bottle and a radio playing 'Forever Young.' "--Vogue "Compelling . . . an original portrait of friendship and identity . . . Dominczyk uses a fresh, confident style."
      • premium: False
      • source: Booklist (starred review)
      • content: "In this arresting debut novel, Polish American film and TV actress Dominczyk pays homage to her native city of Kielce while capturing the joys, insecurities, and struggles of three girlfriends coming of age. Spanning thirteen years, Dominczyk's absorbing story is a triptych of tsknota (Polish for a kind of yearning) and a profound desire for acceptance, freedom, and home."
      • premium: False
      • source: Library Journal
      • content: "Fresh and revelatory."--Publishers Weekly "The narrative moves around seamlessly in both time and place, from Europe to Greenpoint, a Polish neighborhood in New York City's Brooklyn, and to the Midwest. The cast of characters is equally broad in scope, yet each one is richly imagined. . . . This debut is not to be missed."
      • premium: False
      • source: The Star Ledger
      • content: "Captivating . . . There's an honesty and realism to the writing and emotions."
      • premium: False
      • source: Adriana Trigiani, author of The Shoemaker's Wife
      • content: "The Lullaby of Polish Girls is a striking and vivid debut novel, absolutely buzzing with energy. Dagmara Dominczyk's freshly observed story about the intertwined lives of three friends is both sexy and sensitive, with a raw, openhearted center. Dominczyk's love for her complicated characters is apparent from the first page to the last, and by the novel's end the reader cares for them just as deeply."--Emma Straub, author of Laura Lamont's Life in Pictures "The Lullaby of Polish Girls will make you swoon. Dagmara Dominczyk has written a glorious debut novel inspired by her own emigration from Poland to Brooklyn with depth, intensity, humor, and grace. Dagmara is a natural-born storyteller. I'm crazy about this book, and I know you will be too."
      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        March 18, 2013
        This gossipy, feisty debut by actress Dominczyk (The Good Wife; 24) follows a trio of friends across decades and the Iron Curtain, from Communist Poland to adulthood in the U.S. Thinking back on her adolescence, Anna Baran remembers how her immigrant parents sent her back to Poland to their hometown of Kielce every summer, where she, Justyna, and Kamila flirted with boys, ran around unsupervised, and heard each other’s dearest confessions. Adulthood has proved disappointing for all of them: after a breakout performance, Anna’s acting career has stalled, with her agent appealing to her to lose weight, while Kamila has left an unhappy marriage to live with her parents in Detroit and work as a nanny. When Anna, preparing to spend Thanksgiving in Brooklyn without her boyfriend, Ben, hears that Justyna has been left alone in Kielce with her young child after husband Pawel’s murder, she decides she has no choice but to return. Alternating chapters sharing the characters’ teenage exploits are fresh and revelatory, while their intense bond, complicated by petty slights and the discoveries of late-night conversations, enlivens the somewhat prosaic arcs of their present-day plight. Agent: Laura Nolan, Paradigm Talent Agency.

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        March 1, 2013

        This compelling first novel by Polish American actress Dominczyk describes an immigrant family saga that is not unlike her own. The three main characters are girlfriends from their youth in Kielce, Poland, and the story is alternately told in all of their very different voices. Although each young woman has her own problems with life and love, they all struggle with the same issues of female and national identity. The narrative moves around seamlessly in both time and place, from Europe to Greenpoint, a Polish neighborhood in New York City's Brooklyn, and to the Midwest. The cast of characters is equally broad in scope, yet each one is richly imagined and, it would appear, pulled from real life. VERDICT It is easy to believe that the film rights to this cinematic story have already been sold. While its descriptions of emotions and dramatic events sometimes venture into soap opera territory, this debut is not to be missed. Recommended for fans of Gary Shteyngart (The Russian Debutante's Handbook) and other modern novels of the expatriate experience in America. [See Prepub Alert 12/7/12.]--Kate Gray, Worcester, MA

        Copyright 2013 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

popularity
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shortDescription

A vibrant, engaging debut novel that follows the friendship of three women from their youthful days in Poland to their complicated, not-quite-successful adult lives

Because of her father's role in the Solidarity movement, Anna and her parents immigrate to the United States in the 1980s as political refugees from Poland. They settle in Brooklyn among immigrants of every stripe, yet Anna never quite feels that she belongs. But then, the summer she turns twelve, she is sent back to Poland to visit her grandmother, and suddenly she experiences the shock of recognition. In her family's hometown of Kielce, Anna develops intense friendships with two local girls--brash and beautiful Justyna and desperately awkward Kamila--and their bond is renewed every summer when Anna returns. The Lullaby of Polish Girls follows these three best friends from their early teenage years on the lookout for boys in Kielce--a town so rough its citizens are called "the...

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