Friday, June 7, 2024

Q&A with Martin Sneider




Martin Sneider is the author of the new novel Amy Unbound. It's a sequel to his novel Shelf Life. His career has included serving as the president of a large fashion shoe and apparel chain, and teaching at the Olin School of Business at Washington University. He lives in St. Louis and in New York City.


Q: Why did you decide to continue the story of the Feldman family in this new novel?


A: When I concluded Shelf Life, the first of the five books tracing the multigenerational history of the Feldman family, the protagonist, Josh Feldman, is at war with himself. He successfully vanquished his brutal father, but in doing so he discovered and unleashed his dark side. His conscience bothers him and renders him sour and depressed.  


It seemed to me that this mood swing laid the groundwork for the second novel, focusing on his deteriorating relationship with wife Amy.


Q: What inspired the plot of Amy Unbound, and how was the novel’s title chosen?


A: How do Amy and Josh deal with this challenge to their marriage? This is the plot in Amy Unbound. She is a modern ambitious woman, a successful attorney, community activist, sexy and wealthy. She yearns for freedom and is now unbound by the strictures of the marriage and confines of St. Louis.

Q: Did you know how the novel would end before you started writing it, or did you make many changes along the way?


A: I wanted Amy and Josh reunited by the end of the book. The challenge was how to achieve this with an estranged Amy and despondent Josh.


Several subplots were necessary to create the impetus and catalyst for their reunion. These subplots tested my imagination and resulted in surprises, drama, and tension for the reader who is curious how the marriage can survive and even thrive.


Q: What do you hope readers take away from the story?


A: I want the reader to sympathize with Amy early in the novel but shift allegiance to Josh as he tries to revive the marriage. I hope the reader immerses him or herself in Josh’s struggle and discovers how Josh’s deep and abiding love for Amy saves the day.


Q: What are you working on now?


A: I have been working on the third novel in the Feldman family saga…one which focuses on their wild child daughter, Allie, and her quest for love and happiness. 


Q: Anything else we should know?


A: The multigenerational Feldman family saga will end with book five.  Books 3, 4, and 5 will take the reader to Chicago, Miami and New York where their stories unfold.


Challenges will test them and their relationships. Tragedies and traumas will befall them. But they will triumph. I fell in love with the family. I hope the reader will as well.


--Interview with Deborah Kalb

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