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Niagara on the Lake, Ontario, Canada
My virtue is that I say what I think, my vice that what I think doesn't amount to much.

Friday, March 11, 2016

Saving Agnes

Saving Agnes by Rachel Cusk was winner of the 1993 Whitbread First Novel Award. I'd been hearing good things about Cusk for a long time and decided it was time to read something she'd written and started with this debut novel. Agnes Day lives in a falling down house on Elwood St. in an unfashionable area of London with her Oxford pals, Merlin and Nina. She works at Diplomat's Week, a magazine as dull as it sounds. Agnes is depressed and disconnected from her family, her roommates and colleagues at work. She has a boyfriend she sees twice a week. They have unsatisfying sex and she knows absolutely nothing about what he does when he's not with her nor does she seem to care. Eventually she finds out that his heroin addiction might explain the mind numbing quality of their relationship. Cusk is an elegant writer and that's why I hung in until the end. I guess I'm too old to care much about a twenty-something trying to figure out who she is and where she's going. All the ennui wore me down. Agnes couldn't engage with others and I found I couldn't engage with her.

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