Best Intentions Variations in the Night
Waiting to Surface Slightly Like Strangers
Acts of Love

It Was Gonna Be Like Paris

The Last Goodnight  


Best Intentions by Emily ListfieldBest Intentions - Now Available in Paperback!

click here to order

“A writerly page-turner… deft pacing keeps the action moving and the reader guessing.  Listfield ensures no character is above suspicion, and in the end, no one is without blame.” — Publishers Weekly

What happens when you think you know the person you love — and you’re dead wrong?

From the acclaimed author of Waiting to Surface comes the story of four college friends whose reunion reawakens old desires and grudges—with fatal results.

After tossing and turning all night, thirty-nine year old Lisa Barkley wakes up well before her alarms sounds. With two daughters about to start another year at their elite Upper East Side private school and her career hitting a wall, the effort of trying to keep up appearances in a world where long weekends to St. Tropez are the norm, has become increasingly difficult, especially as Manhattan descends into economic freefall.

As Lisa looks over at her sleeping husband Sam, she can’t help but feel like their fifteen-year marriage is in a funk that she isn’t able to place. She tries to shake it off, telling herself that the strain must due to their mounting financial pressures.  But later that morning, Lisa checks  Sam’s voicemail, and hears a whispered phone call from a woman.  Is he having an affair? 

When shares her suspicions with her best college friend, Deirdre, at their weekly breakfast Deirdre claims it can’t be true.  But can Lisa trust her?  When Deirdre’s former college flame comes to town and the two couples meet to celebrate Jack’s fortieth birthday, the stage is set for an explosive series of discoveries with devastating consequences.

Filled with suspense and provocative questions about the relationships we value most, Best Intentions is a tightly woven drama of love, friendship, and betrayal.

“An intriguing story full of warmth, humor and insight.” — Joy Fielding

“The only territory Emily Listfield knows more intimately than Manhattan's social anthropology is a woman's heart, especially when it feels betrayed. Best Intentions is sophisticated, suspenseful and artfully constructed, with sentence after sentence a reader wants to stop and applaud.” — Sally Koslow, author of The Late, Lamented Molly Marx

back to top


Waiting To Surface by Emily ListfieldWaiting to Surface
Now in Paperback!

click here to order

“Searing, poignant, achingly real” — USA Today

My life changed with a single phone call.

One summer morning, I was sitting in my office in Manhattan when the Florida police called. My husband had vanished without a trace. The police, the coast guard and private eye all came up with differing opinions about what happened. I had no idea what to believe – or what to tell our young daughter.

Waiting to Surface is inspired by the all-too-real story of the events surrounding my husband's disappearance. Set in the magazine world I know so well, it is about my search for answers, coming to terms with loss and learning to love again.

“Waiting to Surface is gripping, eloquent, honest and wise. Fans of Elizabeth Berg and Jodi Picoult will appreciate Listfield’s pitch-perfect account of marital trouble turned missing persons mystery, which is enhanced by the author’s intimate knowledge of Manhattan’s fashion and art scenes.”
-- Alisa Kwitney, author of The Dominant Blonde and Flirting in Cars

“A gripping tale”— Parade Magazine

“Listfield spins a tale of supreme loss into one of gutsy, grace-filled redemption.” — Elle Magazine

“The novel contains elements of mystery, but it transcends the mystery genre. It is a well thought out story about wife-husband relationships, mother-daughter relationships, the shortcomings of law enforcement and - perhaps most of all - living with uncertainty.” — St. Petersburg Times

back to top


Acts of Love by Emily ListfieldActs of Love

click here to order

"A beautiful, compelling novel...It's impossible not to instantly care for these flawed people. They are us." — Los Angeles Times

In this tautly drawn novel, Ted and Ann Waring wait for divorce papers in a suburb near Albany, New York. Ted is hoping for reconciliation, but when he returns from a hunting trip with the couple’s two adolescent daughters, he loses his temper one last time, shooting and killing Ann in their living room. He claims it was an accident, but his thirteen-year-old daughter Julia–the only witness–is sure it was murder.

Ali, the younger daughter, doesn’t know which way to turn. And when Julia testifies against her father, she sets into motion a struggle that pits family, friends, and townspeople against one another.

As the many layers of truth unfold in and out of the courtroom, Emily Listfield’s lean and subtle prose reveals how the
emotional events of the past ricochet into the present.

"What a ride! Dialogue like a burning house, revelations like shotgun blasts and descriptions that zip you straight in your chair, spine quivering like a tuning fork." — The Kansas City Star

"A chilling meditation on the so-called acts of love" — The New York Times

back to top


The Last Goodnight by Emily ListfieldThe Last Goodnight

click to order

"It's hard not to become absorbed in the nail-biting, knuckle-whitening suspense that Listfield expertly creates and develops." — Booklist

Laura Barrett has it all — a supportive husband, a beautiful baby daughter and a career in television that has made her face familiar to millions. But there's a shadow over Laura's happiness.

And when a man approaches her after she leaves work and calls her 'Marta', Laura knows that what she's feared for so long has finally arrived. The postcard with the coffin on it confirms that her idyll is over.

Marta was a teenager, growing up on the wrong side of the tracks, when she did something terrible one night in a rundown motel, and she's been running from it ever since. For twenty years, Laura has been trying to erase Marta from her memory. Now a man from her past is confronting her, demanding answers. At first, Laura thinks she can control the situation. But suddenly, she's facing every mother's nightmare: her daughter is kidnapped.

To get her baby back, Laura's going to have to risk her marriage, her career, her life, and finally face up to what happened that night so long ago

"…a canny psychological thriller set in the cutthroat atmosphere of prime-time television news." — The San Francisco Chronicle

"Taut and disturbing." — The New York Times

back to top


Variations in the Night by Emily ListfieldVariations in the Night

click to order

“Listfield writes with a briskness and an immediacy that is crisply delicious.”
— The West Coast Review of Books

Amanda halfheartedly works in Legacies, a small Greenwich Village clothing boutique. She’s never had a serious involvement, only casual flings. Sam is a Midwesterner trying to make it as a reporter in the big city.  He just left his hometown girlfriend back in Ohio. Amanda is afraid of commitment, but doesn’t know it. Sam is prepared to abandon the budding relationship rather than risk rejection. From New York City’s downtown nightspots to Lower East Side lofts, here is a write and bittersweet look at the complex relationship between two people whose own hearts have them terrified.

“Listfield’s sure touch lifts this novel about its trendy theme. In economical, vibrant prose, she conjures a jazzed up New York ambience.”   — Booklist

“It’s an old-fashioned romance, and Emily Listfield’s economical prose suits it exactly.” — Albuquerque Journal

back to top



Slightly Like Strangers by Emily ListfieldSlightly Like Strangers

click to order

“An often incisive, compulsively readable account of love in the 1980s.” – Booklist

What happens when the masks of courtship are stripped away, when facades and defenses break down? In Slightly Like Strangers, Amanda Easton and Sam Chapman move in together and grapple with intimacy and commitment. Their relationship, which began in Listfield’s Variations in the Night, is complex and thoroughly contemporary.

In the bewildering bustle of New York City, the idea of permanence seems at once appealing and terrifying. When Amanda and Sam finally decide to get married, we have a sharply delineated look at what’s behind modern relationships. Listfield focuses on the subtleties of everyday life and the nuances of conversation – showing how much is left unsaid as people try go get along day to day.

"…the story keeps getting better and better enveloping both fan and first-time reader in a space as cozy and warm as the tiny apartment Sam and Amanda share." — New York Times

“Ms. Listfield has a finely honed sense of nuance, which is why her characters are so vivid and coherent. The writing is fresh and lovely from the very first line.” – New York Times

“Listfield artfully captures the indirections, uncertainties and tensions of contemporary relationships.” – Newsday

back to top



It Was Gonna Be Like Paris by Emily ListfieldIt Was Gonna Be Like Paris

click to order

A Notable Book of the Year: “Listfield proves to be an accurate, often disarming reporter of her generation’s foibles.” – New York Times Book Review

The seminal book about New York’s East Village art scene – a vibrant decadent world of young artists who emulate bohemian Paris of the 1920s where eccentric spontaneity is a way of life. This is where Sara, a struggling painter, works, lives and loves. She’s hasn’t made it yet but she’s confident that her talent will carry her through. Sometimes. Sometimes she thinks she’s only fooling herself.

Her ally is sardonic Carrie, whose look is part Vogue model, part bag lady. Her undoing may be Brett, an irresistibly charming, fitfully romantic ‘trouble boy.’ A musician, he is by turns surly, impetuous and unreliable. Sara finds her love for him as addictive as the habit into which he slips more irrevocably every day.

But release from her obsession is as elusive as art itself.

"Listfield captures the disillusionment of young artists in vignettes that combine the rawness of graffiti with the sentimentality of country music." — Esquire

“Listfield skillfully paints a picture of a young woman questioning herself in a transitory, aimless world where many people are not even aware that there are such things as questions.” – Sunday New York Daily News

back to top