W.W.B. Book Club: "Outline" by Rachel Cusk
W.W.B. (Women Write Books) is a reading group that celebrates women authors in both classic and contemporary works!
This month the club will be discussing Outline by Rachel Cusk.
A Finalist for the Folio Prize, the Goldsmiths Prize, the Scotiabank Giller Prize, and the Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction
One of The New York Times' Top Ten Books of the Year
Named a A New York Times Book Review Notable Book and a Best Book of the Year by The New Yorker, Vogue, NPR, The Guardian, The Independent, Glamour, and The Globe and Mail
Chosen as one of fifteen remarkable books by women that are shaping the way we read and write in the 21st century by the book critics of The New York Times
Outline is a novel in ten conversations. Spare and lucid, it follows a novelist teaching a course in creative writing over an oppressively hot summer in Athens. She leads her students in storytelling exercises. She meets other visiting writers for dinner. She goes swimming in the Ionian Sea with her neighbor from the plane. The people she encounters speak volubly about themselves: their fantasies, anxieties, pet theories, regrets, and longings. And through these disclosures, a portrait of the narrator is drawn by contrast, a portrait of a woman learning to face a great loss.
"[A] lethally intelligent novel . . . reading Outline mimics the sensation of being underwater, of being separated from other people by a substance denser than air. But there is nothing blurry or muted about Cusk's literary vision or her prose: Spend much time with this novel and you'll become convinced that she is one of the smartest writers alive." --Heidi Julavits, The New York Times Book Review
"Rachel Cusk's Outline is full of baking light and quiet melancholy and bodies brushing past one another in the heat; it's a subtle and utterly engrossing exploration of the ways we make ourselves known to one another--in stories and anecdotes, through seductions and disputes--and yet remain opaque; how we sketch ourselves as outlines and find these outlines interrogated. Its conversations echo each other deftly, their acute insights gracefully pulling apart the seams of its carefully composed characters to show glimpses of much messier selves within: a series of searing psychic X-rays bleached by coastal light." --Leslie Jamison, author of The Empathy Exams
Rachel Cusk is the author of three memoirs- A Life's Work, The Last Supper, and Aftermath-and several novels: Saving Agnes, winner of the Whitbread First Novel Award; The Temporary; The Country Life, which won a SomersetMaugham Award; The Lucky Ones; In the Fold; Arlington Park; and The Bradshaw Variations. She was chosen as one of Granta's 2003 Best of Young British Novelists. She lives in London.
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