Fire & Water

Fire & Water

Betsy Graziani Fasbinder / Jan 17, 2020

Fire Water Only in the glaring light of hindsight does pediatric surgeon Kate Murphy understand that she was groomed for the path she s taken Raised by a widowed dad and a misshapen sometimes comical trio of pa

  • Title: Fire & Water
  • Author: Betsy Graziani Fasbinder
  • ISBN: 9781938314148
  • Page: 472
  • Format: Paperback
  • Only in the glaring light of hindsight does pediatric surgeon Kate Murphy understand that she was groomed for the path she s taken Raised by a widowed dad and a misshapen, sometimes comical trio of parental surrogates from Murphy s Pub, her father s Irish bar in San Francisco, Kate has never understood how protected she is but when she learns that her well meaning familyOnly in the glaring light of hindsight does pediatric surgeon Kate Murphy understand that she was groomed for the path she s taken Raised by a widowed dad and a misshapen, sometimes comical trio of parental surrogates from Murphy s Pub, her father s Irish bar in San Francisco, Kate has never understood how protected she is but when she learns that her well meaning family has hidden bitter truths about her mother s mental illness and death, the rest of her family history unravels Kate is still recovering from her family s deception when she becomes involved with Jake Bloom a charming artist different than anyone she s ever known When she experiences his sculptures on Ocean Beach, she is forever changed in the months that follow, Jake reveals beauty Kate has never noticed, and exposes her to spontaneity, sensuality, and love deeper than she d imagined it could be Only Mary K Kate s hard edged best friend who doesn t miss a thing and names bull when she sees it is immune to Jake s charms She sees the potential for danger in Jake, and, of course, she says so Caught between her newfound passion and her friendship, Kate dismisses her friend s warnings Ultimately, it isn t until she is in too deep, with a daughter on the way, that Kate understands what Mary K feared on her behalf Fire Water is a story of navigating the treacherous territory of passionate love, friendship, and family devotion and of how love is always a matter of life and death.

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    About "Betsy Graziani Fasbinder"

      • Betsy Graziani Fasbinder

        Betsy Graziani Fasbinder s newest book, Filling Her Shoes A Memoir of an Inherited Family will launch May 2017 When she was about to become a mother for the first time, Betsy found that none of the stories about motherhood, even step mothering seemed to describe her circumstances They talked about pregnancy and baby names, or they spoke of getting along with the ex But she wasn t pregnant, and there was no ex to contend with Betsy was becoming a mother by marrying a widower and adopting his young son There was no child support or custody battle Instead, her new joy in being a wife and mom was accompanied with the knowledge that her joy was possible only because of a tragic loss of a young mother, taken too soon This is a simple, sweet bitter story of how love and loss are not opposites, but cohabitants and how love is the richest of all inheritance Betsy s debut novel, Fire Water, is a dark love story set in San Francisco This is a story that redefines the word family , explores the depth of friendship and the damage that secrets can cause Fire Water is a story that shows that love is always a matter of life and death Fire Water is a silver medalist in the Wishing Shelf Book Awards and has received honorable mentions in the Los Angeles and New York Book Festivals For other works, Betsy has been awarded the Floyd Salas Award for Fiction, and has been honored with a Jack London award and two East of Eden awards for both fiction and memoir pieces Four of her works have been produced as Readers Theater in the historic Miners Foundry Theater in Nevada City, California Fasbinder is currently working on a collection of personal essays titled Filling Her Shoes My Love Story of Inherited Motherhood and a new novel set in Northern California s Wine Country Betsy lives nestled in the soft hills of Marin County, California with her husband, in their intermittently empty nest Her salt and pepper golden doodle, Edgar is her faithful writing companion.


    863 Comments

    1. Don't get me wrong. This isn't some fluffy, starry-eyed romance with a syrupy happy ever after. But it's one of the best books I've read this year. In a way, it reminded me of The Time-Traveler's Wife. Even though two people love each other, sometimes that just isn't enough.


    2. I have not stopped thinking about Kat and Jake since I finished this book several weeks ago.It started off slowly for me, as I associate the somewhat overwrought style of writing with romance novels or soap operas. But what kept me turning the pages was Fasbinder’s unerring instinct for intriguing and well-drawn characters who are flawed in interesting and sympathetic ways. Jake, often gentle and endearing, is a world-class artist with a rather conventional mental illness. Kat, a talented but [...]


    3. I had the honor of reading an ARC of this one and providing a blurb for the back cover:A heart-wrenching journey set against a richly drawn San Francisco Bay Area, Fire & Water deftly explores trust, wealth, family and the way love changes the shape of our hearts. What a beautiful exploration of love and mental illness and family. That I lived in the Bay Area for ten years only enriched my experience of this story. A triumph.


    4. I discovered Betsy on She Writes and was attracted to her generous spirit as an author and community member. Then I ordered Fire & Water and was further impressed.What a haunting and visually affecting read!Rarely have I read a book that took my senses on such a ride! Literally! The world Betsy creates includes details that will stay in my imagination.The story Betsy captures, or stories I should say, because her main character interacts with others over time which allows the reader to know [...]


    5. I started this book not knowing what to expect. Like other reviewers I couldn't put it down! The title says it allART, LOVE, PASSION & MADNESS. A well written story. My heart went out to each of the characters. Mental illness can be such a debilitating disease, and the people that love them suffer just as much if not more. I laughed, I cried & sobbed,(my eyes were swollen shut this morning). I fell in love with all. I am GREATLY surprised how this book affected me. Very good. Fire & [...]


    6. This is a book I couldn't put down - a compelling read that mixes romance, extended family, and both the light and the dark of mental illness. Kate's love for Jake, his commitment to his art and to her, and the interwoven stories of the secondary characters, coupled with the San Francisco location which plays its own role, give this story a richness and depth that aren't always easy to find. Fasbinder has done a tremendous job in crafting a tale that made me laugh and cry, unable to turn away. I [...]


    7. This book surprised me. I really did not know what to expect. I hadn't even read the "back cover." So I got sucked into the love story and the total mystery of where the story was going. The title is perfect. Each word is intregal to the story. That's all that should be said without giving away the story.


    8. I loved this book and its take on mental illness. I've never dealt with bipolar disorder personally, but the way it is presented here brings a small bit of understanding. The writing flowed well, and the imagery was beautiful and frightening.



    9. I couldn't put this down! What was coming next?The beginning was a little slow for me, but once I got involved with the characters and their story, I could not put this down!


    10. This book was recently entered in The Wishing Shelf Book Awards. This is what our readers thought:FEEDBACKAuthor: Fire & WaterTitle: Betsy Graziani FasbinderCOVER: 10/10The readers thought the cover was excellent and the comments on the back well-written, enticing them to read the book. A number of them felt it was by far the best cover in the awards this year with a strong, central image and fun, easy-to-read fonts. One reader put in his feedback: ‘I must say, the cover is excellent. I am [...]


    11. High Ratings NOT an exaggeration!The many reviewers that have rated this book 4- and 5-stars are not exaggerating their ratings. I am skeptical when a book or audio book receives an incredibly disproportionate number of high ratings, but this book earned them! I volunteered to listen to this audio book for review through Audiobook Jukebox with the agreement of providing a honest review. I will keep this review spoiler-free. If you are interested in a book summary, please refer to the book blurb [...]


    12. ***AUDIOBOOK REVIEW***I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.The book itself was done well with its cast of characters, but the audiobook brought it to life by giving all of the characters their different voices and accents. The voice actress, Monica McKey, did an awesome job keeping the characters separate. She definitely made this audiobook.I was listening to this on my commute to work each morning. My husband usually calls me during his break and we talk about what's [...]


    13. So happy to be adding this book to my current reads--when it arrives! Thanks First Reads for choosing this book for me.Fire & Water arrived today along with a very gracious note from author, Betsy Graziani Fasbinder Love and Art are right up my alley, I love San Francisco and this looks like the perfect summer read for me.Wow, I was only about halfway through Fire & Water and stayed up last night and finished it! I found ending to the book so disheartening that Jake had everything going [...]


    14. In rare times, I read a book that gets me stopping halfway in tears & leaving me speechless when trying to write the review. This is one such book.Jake Bloom, the eccentric artist who is the centre piece, is a marvel. He is a master genius in art & seems to know everything about everything. Kate Murphy is Bloom's wife & is an excellent surgeon herself. Their whirlwind romance when they first meet leads them to soon conceive & get married. In the midst of the perfect life (a but t [...]


    15. At first I felt this was a take-off on a theme of Shades of Gray, a woman quickly obsessed with a man. Not so. Katherine quickly falls for exciting and phenomenal artist, Jake. He is her knight in shining armor until several years after their marriage, he goes berserk when he doesn't get his artistic way. She then learns from Jake's manager and best friend, that Jake is bi-polar, manic depressive. His depressive moments threaten the lives of her and her child. Finally, she can take no more and h [...]


    16. This beautiful story gave me an entirely new perspective on mental illness.It took a couple of chapters to really feel invested, but once I did, I couldn't put the book down. I fell in love with every character.You can't help but sympathize with Kate but at the same time want strangle her for her choices.Growing up in the San Francisco bay area makes me appreciate how the city and surrounding areas are described. I will forever see the Golden Gate Bridge in an new light.I would recommend this bo [...]


    17. This woman can spin a yarn. It was so great to read a book with a real story! My habit is to read each night before I go to sleep, and over the last week I literally could not wait to open my Kindle and find out what happened to Kate. The mental health portrayal rang true - something I unfortunately feel qualified to assess since I have a close loved one who suffers from depression. But more than that, it was the storytelling. It is such a great summer read, and I say that not at all using the t [...]


    18. I'm not a romance reader, or at least I didn't think I was. The story isn't an idealised relationship; instead, it's a depiction of the struggles that face people. Wow this is so hard to describe in a way that's appropriate! I found the story very engaging, and like so many good books I found myself thinking about the characters long after I'd finished reading. To be honest, I'm not sure I like the ending, but that may be because it isn't the ending I'd hoped for. And I did have hopes for the ch [...]


    19. This book was a rough one! It wasn't tough to read through but tough to get through emotionally intact. The writing was beautiful and haunting and lasting. It is an amazing account of Love, mental illness and how these characters navigated the waters in between. I loved each and every person in the book even though (and because) they were all flawed in the most beautifully human ways. I cried like a weepy old fart for nearly the entire book and even though it was gut wrenching to live it alongsi [...]


    20. This book was a rough one! It wasn't tough to read through but tough to get through emotionally intact. The writing was beautiful and haunting and lasting. It is an amazing account of Love, mental illness and how these characters navigated the waters in between. I loved each and every person in the book even though (and because) they were all flawed in the most beautifully human ways. I cried like a weepy old fart for nearly the entire book and even though it was gut wrenching to live it alongsi [...]


    21. Outstanding novel. It has it all, and the author, wrote a book, IMO, on par with The Goldfinch. At times, the story is serious, whimsical, suspenseful, funny, and brimming with heart in each chapter. Great writing. Wonderfully fresh to read about two smart women interns/surgeons (one, a lesbian) behaving not so emotionally intelligent. Fasbinder portrays complex friendships, lends insight to the pros and cons of keeping family secrets, and shows in brilliant detail an artist struggling with his [...]


    22. This was a really great book. Very firmly in the chic-lit genre, but not fluffy like the other rubbish out there. It deals with the relationship between the protagonist and a genius artist with bi-polar. I particularly enjoyed it for the realism of his condition. The book was a bit of an emotional roller-coaster to be honest, and at times it was a struggle to get through! Very well written and worth a read. But maybe for a rainy day holiday, it's a little too intense for the beach!


    23. Thought this story has some inappropriate language and a bit of explicit sex, I loved the story. It was a story of an incredibly, talented, artistic man and the woman he falls in love with. Their love is so strong and touching. The characters in this book are rich. I fell in love with them and I grieved for three days after reading this book before I could pick up another book to read. This story gripped my heart and challenged my mind. I highly recommend this book to mature adults.


    24. Fire & Water had a slow build at first allowing me to settle into the location and characters. I enjoyed how the author tested (and proved) the definition of "family" according to each character's needs & what love meant to them. A stimulating, yet heartbreaking journey I recommend other readers to experience!


    25. Betsy Fasbinder has perfectly captured pub culture. I highly recommend this read to fans of Joyce Carol Oats' We Were the Mulvaneys. It is ripping, funny, and often raw. Were it a stage play or film, I would want front row seats!


    26. An engrossing story of a young woman who falls in love with (and marries) a creative genius who turns out to be manic-depressive. A beautifully crafted first novel by this author. I will be looking for more books by her.


    27. Surprise thriller: the summary did not sound like something that would draw me in. However, the characters were so well developed that I couldn't put it down. Would have loved to see the Art exhibits, other than the last 2ry impressive ideas.


    28. Fire and Water is a riveting read and Betsy, besides writing a wonderful book also gives her time to aspiring writers helping them speak and present better.Hear what Betsy has to say about her work with author on Newbie Writers Podcast 11/7/14 ITunes (I forgot the episode number, sorry!)



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