My latest novel follows artist Erica Mason of Gringa in a Strange Land from the laidback Yucatan peninsula to frenetic New York City. In pursuit of becoming an artist with street cred, and peace through oblivion, she has an unexpected epiphany.
"Erica feels like she's in some sort of slow free fall, a bird whose wings can
barely flap, a parachute with a frayed cord."
"This quote seems to exemplify the writing and feel of Cleans Up Nicely. The novel pulled me into Erica's slow fall to the bottom, kept me with her through each lover, each interlude with cocaine, each drink, and of course, every painting. Linda Dahl does a fantastic job of writing about the paintings; the characters come alive and the art finds a way to be seen through the words. The way the book portrays Erica's alcoholism is spot-on, resulting in her becoming an entirely believable character." Goodreads review
Sometimes I feel I am those characters and the slide downward
is mine. I almost inhabit their world. A compelling and captivating
five star read. Laurel-Rain Snow
Especially for those of us who came of age in NYC in the late 60's
and 70's. She has so beautifully captured what it felt like in so many
different ways. Jon Bates
In this new century's second decade, a growing fascination with the
Manhattan low-life of the 1970s is emerging...A significant new
contribution to this genre is Cleans Up Nicely, sequel to
Gringa in a Strange Land. Nino Avante
Takes you on a wonderful journey with Erica and will have you
wanting a third Erica Mason novel. L. Laskey
Not only a love affair with art, men, alcohol, drugs and jazz in
the swirl that was the downtown scene in a radically-evolving era
in New York, but also a resurrection from addiction and self-delusion.
Randolph Hogan, formerly an editor of The New York Times
A pitch-perfect picaresque tale of love lost and found, talent
squandered and reclaimed, friendship forgotten and redeemed,
set in gritty 1970's New York. At the center of the maelstrom is
an artist, Erica, whose will-she-or-won't-she heroine's journey
meanders through Manhattan's uptown art and literary scenes,
downtown dive bars, and Harlem salsa and jazz salons. It all adds
up to a creative cliffhanger that keeps us hooked till the surprising end.
Joan Duncan Oliver
Author, most recently of The Meaning of Nice