Rachel Cusk, the award-winning and critically acclaimed author of Outline and Transit, completes the transcendent literary trilogy with Kudos, a novel of unsettling power.A woman writer visits a Europe in flux, where questions of personal and political identity are rising to the surface and the trauma of change is opening up new possibilities of loss and renewal. Within the rituals of literary culture, Faye finds the human story in disarray amid differing attitudes toward the public performance of the creative persona. She begins to identify among the people she meets a tension between truth and representation, a fissure that accrues great dramatic force as Kudos reaches a profound and beautiful climax.In this conclusion to her groundbreaking trilogy, Cusk unflinchingly explores the nature of family and art, justice and love, and the ultimate value of suffering. She is without question one of our most important living writers....
|Number of Pages||:||572 pages|
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Kudos is a strong finish to this trilogy of novels that started with Outline and continued with Transit. I’ve enjoyed all three novels, but they are difficult to describe. Really, the novels are nothing more than a series of conversations with people Faye, the protagonist, comes into contact with. The conversations in each novel touch on some similar themes so that there are some connections between conversations (in Kudos, the commitment of marriage and negligent parenting resurface regularly), ...more
UPDATE: Now re-read after its inclusion on the Goldsmiths short list. This means I have now read the whole of the trilogy (Outline, Transit, Kudos) twice.
The first time I read this, it was immediately after a back-to-back re-read of the first two parts of the trilogy i.e. I read the whole trilogy in one go without any books in between. I have to acknowledge that I liked this book less on my re-read when I read it apart from the other two volumes. I found myself getting a bit cross about some str ...more
What's the problem here? After loving Outline, I wasn't super enthused about Transit, and I may have liked Kudos even less. The magical feeling I had wandering around Greece in Outline has definitely not been replicated in these later volumes in the trilogy. Is it the change of setting? The fact that some of the characters our protagonist, Faye, speaks with in Transit and Kudos are completely random and therefore it makes no sense that they would open up to her as extensively as they do? Is it t ...more
Finishing Rachel Cusk's "Outline" trilogy today with a little bit of sadness and large amount of awe and admiration. Kudos is the third book in this knotty, cerebral, but remarkable series, and picks up once again with Faye, a novelist who over the course of a few days, meets and engages with various strangers and characters who cross her path on airlines, at literary events and other engagements. Conversations tend to revolve around issues of modern life: careers, relationships, political anxie ...more
Tournament of Books, Summer 2018
Kudos is the ultimate book in Rachel Cusk's Outline trilogy. It follows a middle-aged female author as she travels to a writers conference. The book is neither plot driven nor an in depth character analysis of one persona. Instead the characters flit in and out as they cross paths with Faye. Some remain nameless as the omniscient narrator recalls conversations about the human experience including the creative process, the definition of freedom, and the costs of th ...more
Started wonderfully. I kept saying "this is great" aloud as I read the parts about the countess in Italy and her writer's retreat (I'm 95% sure I know who it's based on). Loved the part with the editor talking about successful novelists who've figured out how to write what are essentially enjoyable entertainments that suggest the literary tradition -- the suggestion itself is all readers can really handle now, like a few antiques in an otherwise modern home (something like that). Loved the inter ...more
The Greek word “kudos” was a singular noun that had become plural by a process of back formation: a kudo on its own had never actually existed, but in modern usage its collective meaning had been altered by the confusing presence of a plural suffix, so that “kudos” therefore meant, literally, “prizes”, but in its original form it connoted the broader concept of recognition or acclaim, as well as being suggestive of something which might be falsely claimed by someone else.
Unlike with Outline an ...more
I met with a number of my Goodreads acquaintances – to share with them my thoughts on the concluding part of Rachel's trilogy of books, a book now shortlisted for the 2018 Goldsmith Prize.
The first to speak was Meike – she was very keen, she said, to understand my views on the book. She herself was a dog lover from a European country, but could read books in at least two other languages including English. She could not she said, tell us, which country she came from or which languages she spoke, ...more