Come From Nowhere, a novel

In the early hours of July 13, 1977 in New York City, seven female characters – ranging from a nine-year-old girl and her Greek immigrant mother, to a young chef who losing her vision, to a brown rat – share the same subway platform.  They are unaware that the next 24 hours will see them struggling to find their way home, both literally and metaphorically, when a historic blackout hits the city.  For the women of Come From Nowhere, this blackout is personal: it brings revelation, self-awareness and, for at least one of them, tragedy.


Praise for Come From Nowhere

“The seven characters we meet at the onset of this remarkable novel, each wrapped in the particular music of their separate lives, are soon to experience the sudden arrival of darkness—New York City’s two-day black out of summer, 1977—and the subsequent transformation of everything.  Written with grace and perceptive intelligence, the narrative that follows is humane, mysterious, tragic, compelling and beautiful.   Come From Nowhere is a gift to thoughtful readers.” 

Chuck Wachtel, author of the novels 3/03, The Gates, and Joe The Engineer

“Oh, how I love this book! Ellen Greenfield expertly, lyrically brings to life a New York of the 1970s that is also completely of today, a city that holds promise and danger in the palm of the same hand. As the women of Come From Nowhere navigate its streets looking for belonging and stability, it’s impossible not to root for them.” 

Allison Lynn, author of Now You See It

“In Come From Nowhere, each of the seven endearing human characters goes on her own personal odyssey, charting the rough seas of New York City in the summer of 1977 with grace and courage. They never lose sight of their shared goal–finding home. The city itself, a metropolis teeming with opportunity, danger and surprise, functions as both a character and as a beacon in the darkness.” 

Natalie Danford, Author of Inheritance

“In Come From Nowhere, Greenfield manages to evoke an entire city in her excellent and surprising depiction of six women who find their wake-up calls in the same dark moment. She’s written a true love letter to New York City and all of its varied inhabitants.”  

Michael Dahlie, author of A Gentleman’s Guide to Graceful Living

“With her tender, funny, and always imaginative prose, Greenfield reveals the roaring inner worlds of seemingly ordinary women. Her unerring sympathy and insight extend even to the rats that scurry along the subway tracks. Mixing myth and reality, pleasure and pain, the playful and the somber, Greenfield turns a sweltering, semi-disastrous summer day into a wrenching tale of seven personal odysseys.” 

Elizabeth Gand, PhD

“Come From Nowhere packs a wallop.  A fast-paced, involving slice of New York life with memorable, deftly drawn characters that keeps the pages turning.”

Judith Kelman, author of The First Stone and Backward in High Heels

 “A gritty, elegant tour-de-force.” 

Jezra Kaye, author of The Tattooed Heart

Greenfield’s novel is a richly imagined look at women from different walks of life and the possibilities, threats, and surprises offered up by life in New York City.”

Publishers Weekly