I'm a landlady.
I'm responsible for a big, busted house and the people who live in it.
Here's a book about what that's like.
In 2004, when I was in my mid-twenties, I bought an abused hundred-year-old three-family apartment building on the west side of Providence, Rhode Island—New England’s third-largest (and first-freakiest) city. I’ve lived on the third floor, and rented out the two apartments below, ever since.
I have chosen to own a complicated home, full of complicated people. My house symbolizes a detour from a traditional life timeline and traditional expectations. I've been a bit slow to grow up; instead of a baby and a bungalow, adulthood has taken the form of a shabby house filled with unpredictable tenants and problematic plumbing. Tenemental is an exploration of how sharing space with others has forced me to grow into myself.
O, The Oprah Magazine picks Tenemental as a Top Summer Read in its July 2018 issue!
"[Tenemental] is not only a story of a young woman’s often hilarious (mis)adventures in homeownership; it is also a thoughtful meditation on how living spaces both reflect and shape the individuals who inhabit them. Refreshingly original reading." —Kirkus Reviews
“Vikki Warner’s memoir is wry, smart, personal, and pretty damn punk rock in its story about home, property, and life as a semi-together feminist twentysomething trying to balance utopian visions of community, friendship, and romance with the harsh realities of crappy tenants, a dilapidated Victorian, and those brutal New England winters.” —Kate Schatz, Rad Women Worldwide
“Tenemental is an unflinching love letter to a city, a neighborhood, and the notion that staying can be a good thing. Cheers to Vikki Warner, whose tenacious and inspiring coming-of-age story gives voice to a new generation of independent women and grown-ass boss ladies.” —Margot Kahn, coeditor of This is the Place
“Vikki Warner’s warm and witty memoir of landladying is like a Gothic tale turned inside out. At its center is an old run-down house, but the world Tenemental inspires is full of color, life, and that special type of real, earned wisdom that only comes with taking risks and trusting completely in your own young self.” —Kate Bolick, author of Spinster: Making a Life of One's Own
“Tenemental is the story of a woman and her ‘ruthless muse’ of a house, but more than anything it's the incredibly raw, touching, and laugh-out-loud story of a woman figuring out how to get by in the world while doing as little harm to it as possible, an ode to the messiness of life.” —Emma Ramadan, Riffraff Bookstore and Bar
"Hilarious and down-to-earth...Warner provides a rare glimpse of life as an emotionally present landlady...A wild ride through the Great Recession and into the anti–environmentally conscious era of Trump. Heartfelt and fascinating." —Booklist