This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are the products of the author’s imagination – well, that’s not exactly true. Certain names, characters, places, and incidents might be from that mysterious place, the author’s imagination, but most are not. Where are they from, you ask? Well, like any work of fiction, these things come from the author’s own life, her memories, stories of friends and family members, stories overheard on the bus, what she’s read, movies, things she’s misremembered, things she’s fantasized about, things she half-researched, half-made-up, all stirred until light and fluffy with the mix-master of craft, thickened with the flour of wordchoice, raised with the baking soda of time, and baked in the writing-process oven, eventually becoming the novel you are holding in your hands. So yes, there will be resemblances to actual events, locales, and persons, living and dead, and no, they most likely will not be entirely coincidental; but try and keep in mind that in almost every instant, it is done without malice, it is done with only the best intentions: to create something fresh and alive, something that has that most elusive of qualities, truth. All of which to say: Please (please) don’t sue.