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Outline: A Novel (English Edition) Format Kindle
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Author of the Booker-longlisted novel Second Place
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 student in storytelling exercises. She meets other writers for dinner. She goes swimming in the Ionian Sea with her seatmate from the place. 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 great a great loss.
Outline is the first book in a short and yet epic cycle - a masterful trilogy which will be remembered as one of the most significant achievements of our times.
Description du produit
Revue de presse
“Cusk is a master of sparse, exquisite prose. . . . [Outline] successfully conveys all of her admirable honesty in the safe harbour of fiction, and somehow delivers more human truths than most memoirs ever could.” (The Globe and Mail)
“[A] lethally intelligent novel. . . . Spend much time with this novel and you’ll become convinced that [Cusk] is one of the smartest writers alive. ” (New York Times)
“Mesmerizing.” (The New Yorker)
“One of the most daringly original and entertaining pieces of fiction I’ve ever read.” (The Observer)
“Quietly radical. . . . Ingenious.” (Vogue) --Ce texte fait référence à l'édition kindle_edition.
Biographie de l'auteur
Détails sur le produit
- ASIN : B07B453M8Q
- Éditeur : Faber & Faber (1 mai 2018)
- Langue : Anglais
- Taille du fichier : 467 KB
- Synthèse vocale : Activée
- Lecteur d’écran : Pris en charge
- Confort de lecture : Activé
- X-Ray : Non activée
- Word Wise : Activé
- Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 258 pages
- Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon : 73,667 en Boutique Kindle (Voir les 100 premiers en Boutique Kindle)
- Commentaires client :
À propos de l'auteur
Meilleures évaluations de France
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Not a very sexy premise, granted, but the book is riveting for its insights into human nature.
Meilleurs commentaires provenant d’autres pays
I read it on holiday and hated it. I persisted but it really put me in a bad mood. I found myself getting wound up by minor things like Cusk’s repeated use of the word ‘bitterer’ instead of ‘more bitter’ for example, and she also seems to think Ireland is part of the British Isles, which wound me up further. The characters have little to redeem them, there is no plot and it comes across as quite vain and narcissistic.
I really wanted to like this, given the number of recommendations in the papers and on Twitter, but I can only assume that the author’s friends have written them.
Reading this suggested that one of the reasons why was that I found her characters less than believable insofar as their conversations, their willingness to discuss their lives and their mistakes, so very articulately, never rang true. Throughout the book I was aware of reading a novel - a very well-observed and beautifully-written novel - written by someone who revels in doing so, but whose failure to create believable scenarios forever felt like an exercise in doing so, rather than creating a world her characters inhabited.
The first two male characters are nameless. The first she refers to as the ‘billionaire’ the second who features predominately, is referred to as the ‘neighbough’. The billionaire has lunch with the narrator and completely outlines his life story — not leaving time to discuss the literary magazine he was thinking of starting up. The ‘neighbough,' who she initially sits next to on the aeroplane, tells the narrator his complete life story from his schooling to his failed marriages. He then later goes on to make a clumsy pass at her aboard his boat during the second of their two rendezvous.
The first named character is Ryan, another writer who is teaching alongside her at the summer school. Ryan comes across as an unlikeable character. Cusk achieves this by describing how he chooses to walk on the inside of the pavement, whilst explaining he doesn't want to be a road casualty statistic — leaving the narrator to walk on the busy roadside. He also shares his life story whilst leering at a young waitress, then justify’s himself by announcing ‘my wife eyeballs the fellas.’ Cusk (2015,p.45) Ryan later finds the narrators friend Elena attractive, but quickly makes his excuses to leave when he hears they are meeting Melete a pre-eminent lesbian poet.
The next character to open up to the narrator is divorced Paniotis. An old writer friend quickly followed by Angeliki, a successful author. Angeliki sees herself as a spokesperson for suffering womanhood, but ironically claims she is afraid when traveling to new and familiar cities without her husband. Both discuss distancing relations with their children. The narrators own children only contact her fleetingly when they want something. Cusk writes about a few of the students at the summer school who vary in personality and neuroses.
Cusk demonstrates that the narrator is a judgemental and unfriendly character when she writes ‘it was this eccentricity that had made me answer him’ Cusk (2015,p.6) implying that if the ‘neighbough’ wasn't eccentric she would have refused to answer him. The narrator is a contrarian and doesn't hold back voicing her thoughts on other peoples lives. She is sharp and intelligent and judges conversation as though she is critiquing a book. ‘I remained dissatisfied by the story…lacked objectivity…relied too heavily on extremes…the moral properties it ascribed to those extremes were often incorrect.’ Cusk (2015,p.29) This demonstrates the narrator takes things literally when listening to dialogue and constantly looks for flaws and consequently finds them. The narrator is a woman of few spoken words and appears to have a mystical presence that when people meet her they openly share their life story. Allowing the narrator to judge their stories for preciseness and bias.
Throughout Outline there is a strong theme of failed relationships. Cusk, an author and divorcee wrote Aftermath (2012) a controversial book detailing her own separation and divorce which received much criticism. Previously Cusk wrote A life's work (2001) a frank and honest book about her becoming a mother. Outline seems to be somewhat of an amalgamation of these concepts, maybe hinting at an autobiographical element. Cusk certainly seems to have written what she knows and the reflective and argumentative side of the narrator is of no surprise when armed with this knowledge.
As a writer I find Cusk has bravely laid out her soul in her books and I am surprised that this has not left her feeling exposed or vulnerable. I hesitate as to whether I could dare to do the same. Sharing a short poem of brutal-inner honesty, is just about cringingly manageable. Someone reading an entire novel of me philosophically musing about my relationships, and their total and utter failure is like being stood nailed, and naked on a brightly lit church pulpit. Could I?
The narrator only gradually comes into being as the stories other tell bounce off her, creating the 'outline' of the title. Flawless writing, hypnotic reading.