Helen Simonson — The Hazelbourne Ladies Motorcycle and Flying Club - with Susan Coll — at Conn Ave

Upcoming Event
Friday, May 10, 2024 - 7:00pm

It is the summer of 1919 and Constance Haverhill is without prospects. Now that all the men have returned from the front, she has been asked to give up her cottage and her job at the estate she helped run during the war. While she looks for a position as a bookkeeper or—horror—a governess, she’s sent as a lady’s companion to an old family friend who is convalescing at a seaside hotel. Despite having only weeks to find a permanent home, Constance is swept up in the social whirl of Hazelbourne-on-Sea after she rescues the local baronet’s daughter, Poppy Wirrall, from a social faux pas.

Poppy wears trousers, operates a taxi and delivery service to employ local women, and runs a ladies’ motorcycle club (to which she plans to add flying lessons). She and her friends enthusiastically welcome Constance into their circle. And then there is Harris, Poppy’s recalcitrant but handsome brother—a fighter pilot recently wounded in battle—who warms in Constance’s presence. But things are more complicated than they seem in this sunny pocket of English high society. As the country prepares to celebrate its hard-won peace, Constance and the women of the club are forced to confront the fact that the freedoms they gained during the war are being revoked.

Whip-smart and utterly transportive, The Hazelbourne Ladies Motorcycle and Flying Club is historical fiction of the highest order: an unforgettable coming-of-age story, a tender romance, and a portrait of a nation on the brink of change.

Helen Simonson was born in England and spent her teenage years in a small village in East Sussex. A graduate of the London School of Economics, she lives in the United States and is a dual citizen and proud New Yorker. Married, with two sons, she is the New York Times bestselling author of Major Pettigrew's Last Stand and The Summer Before the War.

Simonson will be in conversation with Susan Coll, author of Real Life and Other Fictions, Bookish People, The Stager—a New York Times and Chicago Tribune Editor’s Choice---and  Acceptance, which was made into a television movie starring Joan Cusack. Her work has appeared in publications including the New York Times Book Review, the Washington Post, Washingtonian Magazine, Moment Magazine, NPR.org, and Atlantic.com. She is currently the president of the PEN/Faulkner Foundation and the events advisor at Politics and Prose Bookstore, where she has worked for seven years. Newsday has called Coll the “Queen of Literary Comedy.”

This event is free with first come, first served seating.

5015 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008
Non Fiction
The Hazelbourne Ladies Motorcycle and Flying Club: A Novel By Helen Simonson Cover Image
ISBN: 9781984801319
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: The Dial Press - May 7th, 2024