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The One: A Novel
Harvard Book Store welcomes Harvard University alumni JULIA ARGY for a discussion of her debut novel The One.
A Return to In-Person Events
Harvard Book Store is excited to be back to in-person programming. To ensure the safety and comfort of everyone in attendance, the following Covid-19 safety protocols will be in place at all of our Harvard Book Store events until further notice:
- Face coverings are required of all staff and attendees when inside the store. Masks must snugly cover nose and mouth.
About The One
Emily didn’t join the cast of The One for fame or for a relationship. She simply didn’t have anything better to do. Newly fired from her dead-end job, it doesn’t take much convincing when she’s recruited as a last-minute contestant for the popular reality dating show. Emily has been performing her entire life—for her family and friends, former boyfriends, and coworkers. How different could it be playing herself in front of cameras?
But the moment Emily arrives, it becomes clear she’s been tapped to win it all. Emily’s producer Miranda sees her as the golden ticket: generically pretty, affable, and easily molded—all the qualities of a future Wife. Emily herself is less certain. It’s easy enough to fall in love under romantic lighting and perfectly crafted dates, but it’s harder to remember what’s real and what’s designed. And as Emily’s fascination with another contestant grows, both Emily and Miranda are forced to decide what it is they really want—and what they are willing to do to get it.
A brilliant send-up of our cultural mythology around romance, The One examines the reality of love and desire set against a world of ultimate artifice and manipulation.
Praise for The One
“Riveting, astute and darkly comic, The One takes us behind the scenes of reality television: Julia Argy’s delicious novel is more engrossing than the show itself.” —Claire Messud, author of The Emperor’s Children and The Burning Girl
“I could not stop reading Julia Argy’s smart, funny, and tender debut novel about falling in love and finding oneself on and offscreen. Set in the world of reality TV and populated by unforgettable women, The One is everything I want in a novel – deliciously readable prose, a surprising love story, and insights that linger long after the last page. It’s a stunner, and I’m counting the days until Argy’s next book.” —Julie Buntin, author of Marlena
“The One is a whip-smart exploration of what happens when the pursuit of romance is performed for an audience, and the line between the scripted and the real begins to blur. Julia Argy is tremendous on desire, ambition, and self-invention in this sharply funny and powerfully moving debut.” —Laura van den Berg, author of I Hold a Wolf by the Ears
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