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A Mouthful of Air (FORTHCOMING)

a novel by
Amy Koppelman

Preorder this title now!

$ 15.99 
Format:  Paperback (FORTHCOMING)


A Mouthful of Air, a novel by Amy Koppelman (Two Dollar Radio)

"[A] novel that quietly builds suspense to the last page."
Dallas Morning News

"A Mouthful of Air evokes two classics of pre-feminist writing from the last 19th century: The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman and The Awakening by Kate Chopin."
New York Free Press


Now a major motion picture starring Amanda Seyfried.

Compared to seminal feminist works such as Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s “The Yellow Wallpaper” and Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar, A Mouthful of Air is a powerful, tragic statement on motherhood, family, and survival.

A Mouthful of Air is a compassionate and wrenching portrait of Julie Davis, a young wife and mother torn between the love she feels for her family and the voice in her head that insists they’d be better off without her.

We meet Julie several weeks after her suicide attempt, on the eve of her son’s first birthday. Grateful to be alive, Julie tries her best to appreciate every moment—“this tree, that passing car, the pretzel guy up ahead on the corner. She has, for whatever reason, been given a second chance”—but her emotional demons are unrelenting, and she is slowly and quietly losing the battle.

Within the narrative of A Mouthful of Air is an argument about the nature of depression—its causes, cures, and the price it exacts from its victims. With spare, elegant prose, this brutally honest portrayal of family and self illuminates the power and complexity of the human psyche.

Originally published in 2003, A Mouthful of Air now includes an afterword by author Adrienne Miller.


"[A] smart, sensitive first novel."

"Koppelman nails every detail."
The Boston Globe

"This is a story so convincing that never again will you pass a new mother on the street without wondering what's behind her mouthful of smiles."
The New York Observer

"Koppelman's prose is as spare and powerful as poetry."
St. Petersburg Times

"Lean, minutely detailed, and frighteningly convincing."
Publishers Weekly

"Koppelman draws her audience in and never lets loose."
Rocky Mountain News

"This new writer should definitely be considered a rising star."
Boston Herald

"A Mouthful of Air is powerful, accurate, and insightful."
Body & Soul Magazine

"[A] novel that quietly builds suspense to the last page."
Dallas Morning News

"Amy Koppelman tells an ultimately harrowing story, but guides it with restraint and honesty, and no small amount of courage."
Lilith Magazine

"The Bell Jar for moms."
East Bay Express

"Written with a dreamlike intensity... Koppelman is unwaveringly honest and graceful in her storytelling."
Willamette Week

“Anyone who has suffered from depression will recognize the distant, almost ethereal rhythm of Julie’s days.”
Kirkus Reviews

"So visceral is Koppelman's prose, the reader truly feels the depth of Julie's spirit and the toll of her continual struggle to keep herself afloat.

"[Amy Koppelman] does a tremendous job conveying the point that, although Julie is surrounded with some degree of affluence, none of it can pacify the mental anguish of depression... The mood of the novel is a clear insight into the depth of talent Koppelman possesses as a writer."
—David Exum, BookReporter

"In this riveting and disturbing novel, Koppelman speaks for women... whose internal battles pass unremarked by society at large."
—Luan Gaines, Curled Up With a Good Book

"Amy Koppelman offers a message of compassion as well as a scathing indictment of modern American life from a fresh, wholly original angle."
—Holt Uncensored

"This searing and honest first novel offers both compelling narrative and stunning insight into the crippling grip of depression."
BookWomen Magazine

"A well written, harrowing story (told with glaring honestly)."
—Shannon Bigham, BookLoons

"A Mouthful of Air evokes two classics of pre-feminist writing from the last 19th century: The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman and The Awakening by Kate Chopin."
New York Free Press

"This debut novel is nothing short of astonishing: read it and weep."
—Yona Zeldis McDonough, author of The Four Temperaments

"Eminently worth reading."
—Dr. Morton I. Teicher, National Jewish Post & Opinions

"This is a novel to share with a colleague... It is a story that reminds us to care deeply about our patients."
—Nancy Glimm, C.S.W., Psychiatric Services

"A Mouthful of Air is a stunning first novel, which offers no hope to alleviate the pain of despair. The joy is all in Koppelman's gift in telling a true and moving story."
—Maureen Howard, author of Facts of Life and Natural History


Amy Koppelman, author of A Mouthful of Air

Amy Koppelman is the author of three critically acclaimed novels: A Mouthful of Air, I Smile Back, and Hesitation Wounds, a 2016 Independent Publisher Book Award winner. She produced and co-adapted the film adaptation of I Smile Back, starring Sarah Silverman, who received a SAG award nomination for the role. The film premiered at the Sundance, Toronto, and Deauville film festivals. Her latest film, A Mouthful of Air, is her first undertaking as a screenwriter, director, producer, and illustrator. She received her B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and a fiction MFA from Columbia, where she is an Adjunct Professor. Amy lives in New York City with her family. She is an outspoken advocate for women’s mental health.

Visit the Amy Koppelman author page for additional details and interviews.

Adrienne Miller (author of the afterword) is the author of the novel The Coast of Akron and the memoir In the Land of Men. She was the literary editor of Esquire.

Sneak Peek

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FORMAT: Paperback
LIST PRICE: $15.99
PAGES: 212
PRINT ISBN: 9781953387141
DIGITAL ISBN: 9781953387158
RELEASE DATE: 8/17/2021
SIZE: 5.5" x 7.5"

Printed in Canada by Marquis, with the following environmental statement:
*Printed on Rolland Enviro. This paper contains 100% post-consumer fiber, is manufactured using renewable energy - Biogas and processed chlorine free.
*FSC certified paper (inside and cover).

Paper Rolland Enviro icons