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Transit: Book summary and reviews of Transit by Rachel Cusk

Transit

by Rachel Cusk

Transit by Rachel Cusk X
Transit by Rachel Cusk
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  • Published in USA  Jan 2017
    272 pages
    Genre: Novels

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Book Summary

The stunning second novel of a trilogy that began with Outline, one of The New York Times Book Review's ten best books of 2015.

In the wake of her family's collapse, a writer and her two young sons move to London. The process of this upheaval is the catalyst for a number of transitions - personal, moral, artistic, and practical - as she endeavors to construct a new reality for herself and her children. In the city, she is made to confront aspects of living that she has, until now, avoided, and to consider questions of vulnerability and power, death and renewal, in what becomes her struggle to reattach herself to, and believe in, life.

Filtered through the impersonal gaze of its keenly intelligent protagonist, Transit sees Rachel Cusk delve deeper into the themes first raised in her critically acclaimed novel Outline and offers up a penetrating and moving reflection on childhood and fate, the value of suffering, the moral problems of personal responsibility, and the mystery of change.

In this second book of a precise, short, yet epic cycle, Cusk describes the most elemental experiences, the liminal qualities of life. She captures with unsettling restraint and honesty the longing to both inhabit and flee one's life, and the wrenching ambivalence animating our desire to feel real.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred and Boxed Review. Outstanding ... As always, Cusk's ear for language and dialogue is sharp; her characters speak about universal ideas, such as anxiety and lust. This marvelous novel continues the author's vivid exploration of the human condition." - Publishers Weekly

"Starred Review. With the sparest prose, Cusk has again created an expertly crafted portrait in this distinctive novel about the fear and hope that accompany change, and one woman's quest to conquer them. A masterful second installment to a promising trilogy." - Booklist

"The narrator's apparent emotional distance makes her a sounding board for the other characters, who open up and share their lives and struggles. In a way, Cusk is unmasking one way that writers take life and turn it into fiction, and this experiment with the form and definition of the novel make this a recommended purchase where creative writing and contemporary literature collections are strong." - Library Journal

"Brilliantly written and structured, which is nothing new from this superlatively gifted writer, but with a chastened empathy for human weakness that was absent from her last two novels. Its return is most welcome." - Kirkus

"Brave and uncompromising in its literary ambition, Transit is a work of cut-glass brilliance that quietly insists on the reader's thoughtful attention. One beautifully crafted sentence follows another." - The Financial Times (UK)

"Cusk is now working on a level that makes it very surprising that she has not yet won a major literary prize. Her technical originality is equaled by the compelling nature of her subject matter, and Transit is a very fine novel indeed." - The Observer (UK)

"Cusk is always an exciting writer: striking and challenging, with a distinctive cool prose voice, and behind that coolness something untamed and full of raw force, even rash ... Cusk has tuned in to our curiosity about the lives of others, and composed out of that curiosity something capacious and generous." - The Guardian (UK)

"Transit is an extraordinary piece of writing - stunningly bold, original, and humane." - The Daily Telegraph (UK)

The information about Transit shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

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Author Information

Rachel Cusk Author Biography

Rachel Cusk is the author of the trilogy Outline, Transit and Kudos; the memoirs A Life's Work, The Last Supper, and Aftermath; and several other novels: Saving Agnes, winner of the Whitbread First Novel Award; The Temporary; The Country Life, which won a Somerset Maugham 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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  • Outline jacket

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