in between days

A Barnes & Noble “Discover Great New Writers” Selection

An exceptionally engaging first novel from a commanding new voice in fiction, author of the award-winning and widely acclaimed story collection The Theory of Light and Matter.

The Harding family is teetering on the brink. Elson—once one of Houston's most promising architects—is recently divorced from his wife of thirty years, Cadence. Their grown son, Richard, is still living at home: driving his mother's minivan, working at a local coffee shop, resisting the career as a writer that beckons him. But when Chloe Harding gets kicked out of her East Coast college, for reasons she can't explain to either her parents or her older brother, and returns to Houston, the Hardings' lives begin to unravel. Told with piercing insight, taut psychological suspense, and the deftness of a true master of character, this is a novel about the vagaries of love and family, about betrayal and forgiveness, about the possibility and impossibility of going home.


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           Australian Edition                             French Translation                     Bulgarian Translation


  1. Barnes & Noble “Discover Great New Writers” Selection

  2. IndieBound “Indie Next” Selection

  3. Barnes & Noble “Bookseller’s Pick” for September 2012.

  4. San Antonio Express-News’ Best Books of 2012: “Fictional Work of the Year”

   Reading Group Guide for In Between Days

Korean Translation                         French Pocketbook Edition


In Between Days is a tightly wound novel of suspense, wrapped in the emotional trials of a family teetering on the edge of disaster. Andrew Porter has given us a fresh, modern, literary page-turner, exposing in turn the inner lives of father, mother, brother and sister. Grown-ups go around behaving like children, while adult children refuse to grow up, until ultimately everyone is shaken from their sheltered lives and into a whole new world.”

—Hannah Tinti, Author of The Good Thief

“[Porter] writes with intuitiveness about the complexities of family life and creates indelible characters . . . What makes In Between Days so compelling is the characters. Each is holding something back from the others, carrying a secret, telling only half the truth most of the time. By withholding vital information, Porter is able to develop a sense of unease as thick as Houston smog . . . It’s our fictional work of the year.”

The San Antonio Express-News

“When it comes to novels about the modern family, nobody does it quite like the Americans. From John Cheever and Richard Yates to Jonathan Franzen, Jeffrey Eugenides and this year's women's prize for fiction winner AM Homes, no one can touch them for their portrayal of the dark underbelly of this supposedly model institution. In Between Days might well be Pennsylvania-born author Andrew Porter’s first novel, but it proves his credentials as a writer worthy of a place in this illustrious hall of fame. Eminently moving but never sentimental, Porter's powerful tale of a dysfunctional family at breaking point is plotted with the suspense of a well-paced thriller.”

The Guardian

“[Gives] a real and moving sense of how families are composed of so many moments mutually and individually and collectively experienced . . . The author manages to make us care, to help us see how every move and each decision, however seemingly important or inconsequential, ravels and unravels a family’s life, as the fabric nonetheless somehow holds together . . . Eloquent.”

The Minneapolis Star Tribune

In Between Days confirms that Andrew Porter has arrived . . . a Jamesian examination of character that dances a quadrille with the points of view of the four Hardings . . . the prose and pacing are nearly flawless.”

The Texas Observer

“This is Andrew Porter’s first novel and, as a portrait of a modern American nuclear family, it is a deft one. He weaves in the full tapestry of contemporary life and its complications: male menopause, desperate housewives, extended adolescence and race relations in post-9/11 America.”

The Dallas Morning News

“Porter’s debut novel grabs the reader and does not let go until the last line . . . The plot moves backward and forward in time, artfully revealing key details and maintaining a mesmerizing level of suspense . . . Highly recommended.”

Library Journal

“A stirring page-turner, part Chekhov, part Hitchcock . . . a deftly paced social psychodrama.” 

Houston Magazine

“I was shaken by this cautionary tale of what can happen when a family’s secrets become larger than the love they share.”

Real Simple

In Between Days is as complex and sensitive in psychology as it is credible and compelling in narrative . . . [Porter] quietly—and masterfully—creates the context in which this quartet of characters display not just their vulnerabilities but their desperate comprehension.”

The Baton Rouge Advocate

“The story is told with great emotional insight. All four of the Hardings get to tell their pieces of the story in their distinct voices, creating a multi-layered and suspenseful tale of love in all its varieties and family defined in different ways.”


“Andrew Porter’s debut novel, In Between Days, is a powerful portrait of family dysfunction, a worthy successor to his award-winning short story collection, The Theory of Light and Matter.”

Texas Monthly

“A family drama spiced with a touch of intrigue . . . There’s a reason writers love dysfunctional families—they are and endless source of dramatic fodder, encompassing just about every flavor of human neurosis and cruelty imaginable. In Between Days, the debut novel of the well regarded short-story writer Andrew Porter, is a welcome new entry in the canon.”

The Boston Globe

This is a beautifully written and immaculately observed portrait of what happens to the splinters of a broken family, and their shared concept of Home. Terrific. “

The Times (London)

“A striking assemblage of generational disintegrations and distress that will remind some readers of [the] Ingmar Bergman-inspired Woody Allen art house flick Interiors by way of Jeffrey Eugenides’ The Virgin Suicides . . . Porter has effortlessly and enviably, it seems, made the tough transition from best-kept literary secret to bestseller material.”

San Antonio Magazine

“Porter’s absorbing debut novel chronicles the slow-motion fracture of an upper-middle class Houston clan . . .  The prose is smooth—practically frictionless, thanks to Porter’s realistic yet meaningful dialogue and his plainspoken, nonjudgemental descriptions . . . Porter wants to explore why we take such firm hold of some parts of our emotional lives  but willfully neglect others, and his surprise ending suggests why it’s worth breaking free of others’ definitions of emotional attainment.”

Kirkus Reviews

Andrew Porter’s 2010 debut, the story collection The Theory of Light and Matter, was much acclaimed. This compelling, perceptive novel confirms his talent. Porter gives us a portrait of a household on the brink of dispersal, but even as he depicts the tensions of family life he movingly affirms its consolations.”

The Financial Times (UK)

The real treat is Porter’s plainspoken treatment of his characters, quiet and intense, and the revelations of fine but substantive fractures that are impossible to repair.”

The Paris Review Daily

“Andrew Porter’s poised study of the meaning of love, family and home has a meatier, more suspenseful plot than you’d anticipate [and] the backdrop, Houston, is also unexpected, taking on a lush complexity in Porter’s telling”

—The Daily Mail (UK)

“Absolutely mesmerizing . . . Andrew Porter had me at page one of In Between Days . . . If you care at all about excellent writing, intriguing storylines, character development, human behavior, family relationships, or just plain great reading, do not miss this book.”

Coastal Breeze News

“One of the year’s stellar debut novels . . . Porter follows his impressive story collection, The Theory of Light and Matter, with the exquisitely told dysfunctional family drama In Between Days.” —David Gutowski, Largehearted Boy

“In clear, clean prose, and reminiscent of Rosellen Brown’s Before and After and Reservation Road by John Burnham Schwartz, Andrew Porter’s astonishing and provocative debut novel follows a family falling apart in the face of colliding expectations, secrets and betrayals.”

The Barnes & Noble Review (a “Discover Great New Writers” selection)

Beautifully written, deeply felt, and sharply intelligent, Andrew Porter's In Between Days is a subtly drawn masterpiece.”

—Powell’s Books

“Porter has achieved the holy grail of the modern novelist - he has written about a dysfunctional family in a way that is wholly original, with elegant prose that is a pure joy to read.”

—Book People Bookstore, Austin, TX

“This is one of those rare books—a first novel, written by a young writer—where we witness many gifts come together in a manner that seems effortless. In Between Days is taut and insightful, thrilling and suspenseful, and through it all Porter shows an understanding and feeling for his characters that is so genuinely deep and loving that we can’t help but feel grateful.”

—Skylight Books, Los Angeles

"I couldn't put In Between Days down. I was captured by the story of a family falling apart and daughter Chloe's obsessive love for her boyfriend. "
—University of Washington Bookstore, Seattle, WA

“Beautifully written and suspenseful . . . Porter masterfully presents each of his characters with stunning believability.”

—Bookshop Santa Cruz

“An engaging novel . . . fraught with tragedy and tension.”

—Greenlight Bookstore, Brooklyn, NY

“Porter’s prose if gorgeous, fluid and precise . . . [an] astonishing and provocative debut novel”

—Miwa Messer, Director of the Barnes & Noble “Discover Great New Writers” Series

“Truly wonderful, literary prose; characters who could be your own sister/brother/mother/father. Porter is an enormous talent.”

KXAN (NBC) News and Book People Bookstore

“Porter has crafted a novel of emotional insight, increasing tension and a story that pulls the reader into unusual but always credible family circumstances . . . a gripping story”

The New Zealand Herald

Eminently moving but never sentimental, Porter's powerful tale of a dysfunctional family at breaking point is plotted with the suspense of a well-paced thriller.”

The Guardian (UK)

In Between Days is Andrew Porter's beautifully crafted tale of a family falling apart. Twisting and turning the narrative, Porter sensitively charts the systematic splintering of the Harding family unit, disrupting the traditional notion of 'family' and asking how you put the pieces back and, perhaps most importantly, how you carry on?”

—Booktrust (UK)

“An absorbing and suspenseful family drama . .  . Throughout this tale, Porter manages to accurately convey both the fragility and strength of the family unit . . . A moving portrait of an intensely dysfunctional family.”

The National

“[Porter] has a commanding ear for dialogue . . . and paints his portrait of a family gone wrong in harrowing detail.”

Pop Matters

“Porter writes each character with sensitivity . . . unflinching honesty . . . Love that was supposed to last forever doesn’t end, exactly; rather it becomes transmuted into nostalgia for what used to be but is no longer livable. Through his close psychological portrait of the Hardings, Porter shows how bittersweet that change is.”

Full Stop

A powerful debut novel by the acclaimed author of the short-story collection The Theory of Light and Matter . . . This cautionary tale as seen through the eyes of a disintegrating family is lucid, luminous, and enjoyable . . . [a] taut yet eloquent narrative.”

—Steve Evans, Finders Indaily (Australia)

“A powerful tale of a family in disarray, In Between Days deftly explores the aftermath of crime and tragedy on a close-knit family . . . Andrew Porter’s novel combines precisely drawn characters and compelling psychological suspense to create a masterful novel of an American family in chaos.”

—Texas Book Festival

“Heartbreakingly realistic . . . if you’re a fan of adult fiction, you should give this book a try.”

—The Bookwheel

“This beautifully-written novel forces us to examine the power of white versus Muslim in America, frightening us with the results of blanket prejudice and loss, leaving us to wonder about our own racism and what lengths we must go to to find hope.”


“A first novel of surprising maturity . . . [Porter] is a master of the snapshot, in the manner of Raymond Carver.”

Le Temps (France)

“By blending literary fiction with a touch of suspense, Porter has written a novel that takes the genre to a new place.”

River City Reading

In Between Days is a elegiac achievement. Andrew Porter’s second book approaches the topics of discrimination, disintegrating relationships, identity and infidelity with an uncanny compassionate ease . . . pleasurable, emotively cohesive, you won’t put this book down unless you have to.”

Campus Rap (Australia)

“A perceptive portrait of a modern and broken family. The struggle of each of the characters with their own identity is flawlessly observed.”

Must Reads (The Netherlands)

“An addictive novel . . . sensitive and controlled writing . . . impeccably suspenseful.”

Cathulu (France)

“Andrew Porter has written a penetrating novel . . . a mosaic of a plot that unfolds effortlessly over four hundred pages.”

Cobra (The Netherlands)

“A beautiful painting of ordinary life, this novel tells of love and disenchantment, bitterness and joy, betrayal and forgiveness . . . a sensitive novel.”

PAGE: Le Livres Par Les Librairies (France)

“A captivating novel that reveals a nuanced writer.”

—La Semaine (France)

“A beautiful novel with moments of tension and compassion. A book that raises many questions.”

Onalulu (France)

“A revelation . . . Andrew Porter enters the big leagues thanks to his last great novel In Between Days.”

Men’s Up (France)

“A psychological suspense . . . The terror that emerges is reminiscent of the The Ice Storm by Rick Moody.”

Sud Ouest (France)

“This is such a superior American novel . . . delightful”

Marleens Boek van de Week (The Netherlands)

“This is Porter’s first comprehensive novel. Very successful.”

Cafe Powell (France)

“After a masterful collection of short stories, Andrew Porter has written a remarkable first novel . . . the literary debut of Andrew Porter was already breathtaking . . . [In Between Days] is even stronger”

Livres Hebdo (France)

“A beautiful novel . . . Porter dissects the relationships of the family members and explore with subtlety, sensitivity and understanding the psychology of each . . . absolutely masterful.”

Clara et les Mots (France)

“Remarkable subtlety and intelligence . . . a fascinating portrait on an era, the US post September 11th . . . an excellent thriller.”

Lilly in the Vallee (France)

“A thriller with an excellent sense of suspense, this novel continues to surprise the reader.”

Cuneipage (France)

“A first novel that shows a great narrative mastery.”

Audouchoc (France)

“An addictive novel with a flawless sense of suspense.”

Planete Ardechoise (France)

“Andrew Porter, a keen observer, immerses himself in the lives of the Harding family . . . a novel that clings to you . . . very successful.”

Ruban Carbone: Daily Culture (France)

“Here is a classically told, great novel along the lines of a Raymond Carver or John Cheever, and I'm willing to state it here: one day Andrew Porter will win a Pulitzer or National Book Award.”

Liz and Gianna’s Adventures in Bookland



United Kingdom Edition                     Dutch Translation