Whitney Scharer



Whitney Scharer


Arlington, MA, USA


Fiction, Historical Fiction, Literary Fiction, Foodies

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Whitney Scharer holds a BA in English Literature from Wesleyan University and an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Washington. Her short fiction, essays, and interviews have appeared in numerous publications including Vogue, The Telegraph, The Tatler, and Bellevue Literary Review. Her first novel, The Age of Light, based on the life of pioneering photographer Lee Miller, was published by Little, Brown (US) and Picador (UK) in February, 2019, and was a Boston Globe and IndieNext bestseller, People Pick of the Week, Amazon Book of the Month selection, and Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Pick. It is forthcoming from over a dozen other countries. Whitney has been awarded residencies at the Virginia Center for the Arts and Ragdale, a St. Botolph Emerging Artists Grant, and a Somerville Arts Council Artists Fellowship. She teaches fiction in the Boston area and is a co-founder of the Arlington Author Salon, a quarterly reading series. She lives with her husband and daughter in Arlington, MA, where she is at work on her second novel.

Perfect for book club discussions,  The Age of Light  is based on the real life figure Lee Miller, a Vogue model turned renowned photographer, whose search to forge a new identity as an artist after a life spent as a muse took her from 1930s Paris to the battlefields of WWII. Deeply researched, this historical novel engenders great discussions on feminism, art, and history–and will send your book club straight to the internet to learn the story and see the photos that the book is based on. “I’d rather take a photograph than be one,” Lee declares after she arrives in Paris in 1929, where she soon catches the eye of the famous Surrealist Man Ray. Though he wants to use her only as a model, Lee convinces him to take her on as his assistant and teach her everything he knows. But Man Ray turns out to be an egotistical, charismatic force, and as they work together in the darkroom, their personal and professional lives become intimately entwined, changing the course of Lee’s life forever.Lee’s journey takes us from the cabarets of bohemian Paris to the battlefields of war-torn Europe during WWII, from discovering radical new photography techniques to documenting the liberation of the concentration camps as one of the first female war correspondents. Through it all, Lee must grapple with the question of whether it’s possible to reconcile romantic desire with artistic ambition-and what she will have to sacrifice to do so.Told in interweaving timelines, this sensuous, richly detailed novel brings Lee Miller–a brilliant and pioneering artist–out of the shadows of a man’s legacy and into the light.

Book Title 1

The Age of Light

Book Cover 1

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