A Novel

Book - 2018
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Reyna knows her relationship with Boyd isn't perfect, yet she sees him through a three-month stint at Riker's Island, their bond growing tighter. Kiki, now settled in the East Village after a youth that took her to Turkey and other far-off places -- and loves -- around the world, admires her niece's spirit but worries that motherhood to four-year-old Oliver might complicate a difficult situation. Little does she know that Boyd is pulling Reyna into a smuggling scheme, across state lines, violating his probation. When Reyna takes a step back, her small act of resistance sets into motion a tapestry of events that affect the lives of loved ones and strangers around them.
Publisher: Berkeley, California : Counterpoint, 2018.
Copyright Date: ©2017.
ISBN: 9781640091139
Characteristics: 227 pages ;,21 cm


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
ArapahoeStaff26 Mar 04, 2019

A beautiful work of compelling literary fiction, Improvement recounts the stories of several characters connected by their relationship to Reyna, a single mother living in New York City. The first and last chapters are narrated by Reyna in an honest, intelligent voice. The theme of the book is love. By the end of the book even lost love has the power to transform.

Aug 05, 2018

Very well organized, really more a collection of closely linked stories than novel; good (but not very good) writing; stories unwind at a frenetic pace; a cynical look at middle America's values of sex and money; shallow and callous; juvenile, more young adult than adult audience.

Jul 07, 2018

This is a great novel. Weaving together the stories of three people with the connecting theme of Turkey and rugs, Silber takes us on a journey as different people who have been connected however loosely go about their lives and find happiness.

May 06, 2018

I stopped reading this book about ten pages before the end due to boredom.

Apr 05, 2018

This is a fast read, and enjoyable novel. All the characters are connected somehow and not necessarily aware of their connection.

Mar 24, 2018

Turkish rugs and unexpected connections thread through the loosely connected stories and people in Silber’s book. Author compared to Alice Munro, which sets expectations very high and left me disappointed. Good writing, but too many threads in such a short book. No tension. Nothing tying stories together. You just come to the end.

Mar 22, 2018

Pleasant, interconnecting characters moving through time, geography, and generation.
A light and enjoyable read.

Mar 22, 2018

After reading a review of this newest Joan Silber novel I was intrigued and requested it, and read it. The novel jumps or leaps from person to person, from place to place--mostly Istanbul and New York city, and from past time to more present. But the tone of warmth, wit, a bit of irony, and care for the difficulties of her characters remains constant.
I read it with pleasure, eagerly awaiting the next twist, the next landing place, and the next revelation of plot or character. Also, a central character is a single mother, and I was one, so this offered a easy identity. This woman, Reyna, is never tragic or pathetic, but simply trying to make a life for herself and her kid, and looking for love and connection, which she finds and loses.
Read and enjoy.


Add a Quote
ArapahoeStaff26 Mar 04, 2019

He couldn't guess how much I'd missed him. Maybe he could. There was no hope of ever being with him again - not a particle of likelihood - so why was I so gone with joy at the sight of him?

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at Library

To Top