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Arlington Park by [Cusk, Rachel]
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Arlington Park Kindle Edition

3.0 out of 5 stars 29 customer reviews

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Length: 257 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled

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Review

"ARLINGTON PARK is a strikingly good novel, funny, poignant, savage, tender, and appalling. What I like most is the purity of the writing, the beautiful aptness of the language to thought and theme, and the play of wit. The satire has force because is is written from within, and all the characters, however absurd, are trapped, struggling, and deeply human."
--Helen Dunmore, author of THE SIEGE and TALKING TO THE DEAD, winner of the Orange Prize


""Arlington Park" is a strikingly good novel, funny, poignant, savage, tender, and appalling. What I like most is the purity of the writing, the beautiful aptness of the language to thought and theme, and the play of wit. The satire has force because is is written from within, and all the characters, however absurd, are trapped, struggling, and deeply human."
--Helen Dunmore, author of "The Siege" and "Talking to the Dead," winner of the Orange Prize


"Everything about "Arlington"" Park"" "is original and fearless."--Francine Prose, "Bookforum"

"Hideously funny . . . A novel with a sense of rightness at its core and a narrative intelligence so swift and piercing it can take your breath away.""--The Boston Globe"

"Her books are smart and deep, telling tales of urban life that are the twenty-first-century version of Austen or Thackeray. . . . Cusk's depictions and evaluations are spot-on, her language smooth and enthralling."--"Baltimore"" Sun"

"Cusk's glory is her style, cold and hard and devastatingly specific, empathetic but not sympathetic."--"Los Angeles"" Times"

"Cusk's frank acknowledgment of maternal ambivalence is rare and wonderful."--"Entertainment Weekly"

"Sharp wit and commanding prose."--"The New York Times"

"Devastating . . . Incisively vivid."--"Publishers Weekly"

"Everything about "Arlington"" Park"" "is original and fearless."--Francine Prose, "Bookforum"

 

"Hideously funny . . . A novel with a sense of rightness at its core and a narrative intelligence so swift and piercing it can take your breath away.""--The Boston Globe"

 

"Her books are smart and deep, telling tales of urban life that are the twenty-first-century version of Austen or Thackeray. . . . Cusk's depictions and evaluations are spot-on, her language smooth and enthralling."--"Baltimore"" Sun"

 

"Cusk's glory is her style, cold and hard and devastatingly specific, empathetic but not sympathetic."--"Los Angeles"" Times"

 

"Cusk's frank acknowledgment of maternal ambivalence is rare and wonderful."--"Entertainment Weekly"

 

"Sharp wit and commanding prose."--"The New York Times"

 

"Devastating . . . Incisively vivid."--"Publishers Weekly"

"Everything about "Arlington"" Park"""is original and fearless."--Francine Prose, "Bookforum"

"Hideously funny . . . A novel with a sense of rightness at its core and a narrative intelligence so swift and piercing it can take your breath away.""--The Boston Globe"

"Her books are smart and deep, telling tales of urban life that are the twenty-first-century version of Austen or Thackeray. . . . Cusk's depictions and evaluations are spot-on, her language smooth and enthralling."--"Baltimore"" Sun"

"Cusk's glory is her style, cold and hard and devastatingly specific, empathetic but not sympathetic."--"Los Angeles"" Times"

"Cusk's frank acknowledgment of maternal ambivalence is rare and wonderful."--"Entertainment Weekly"

"Sharp wit and commanding prose."--"The New York Times"

"Devastating . . . Incisively vivid."--"Publishers Weekly"

Everything about "Arlington"" Park" is original and fearless. "Francine Prose, Bookforum"

Hideously funny . . . A novel with a sense of rightness at its core and a narrative intelligence so swift and piercing it can take your breath away. "The Boston Globe"

Her books are smart and deep, telling tales of urban life that are the twenty-first-century version of Austen or Thackeray. . . . Cusk's depictions and evaluations are spot-on, her language smooth and enthralling. "Baltimore Sun"

Cusk's glory is her style, cold and hard and devastatingly specific, empathetic but not sympathetic. "Los Angeles Times"

Cusk's frank acknowledgment of maternal ambivalence is rare and wonderful. "Entertainment Weekly"

Sharp wit and commanding prose. "The New York Times"

Devastating . . . Incisively vivid. "Publishers Weekly""

"Everything about Arlington Park is original and fearless." --Francine Prose, Bookforum

"Hideously funny . . . A novel with a sense of rightness at its core and a narrative intelligence so swift and piercing it can take your breath away." --The Boston Globe

"Her books are smart and deep, telling tales of urban life that are the twenty-first-century version of Austen or Thackeray. . . . Cusk's depictions and evaluations are spot-on, her language smooth and enthralling." --Baltimore Sun

"Cusk's glory is her style, cold and hard and devastatingly specific, empathetic but not sympathetic." --Los Angeles Times

"Cusk's frank acknowledgment of maternal ambivalence is rare and wonderful." --Entertainment Weekly

"Sharp wit and commanding prose." --The New York Times

"Devastating . . . Incisively vivid." --Publishers Weekly

Sunday Times

'funny and exhilaratingly unrepentant ... deliriously enjoyable'

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 549 KB
  • Print Length: 257 pages
  • Publisher: Faber & Faber; Open market ed edition (9 Dec. 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004G8QI1M
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars 29 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #238,901 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer reviews

Top customer reviews

Format: Paperback
The start to this novel is brilliantly evocative describing the rain over a night time city: 'In their sleep they heard it, people lying in their beds: the thunderous noise of the water...it made them feel somehow observed, as if a dark audience had assembled outside and were looking in through the windows, clapping their hands.'
And then Cusk takes us through a day in the life of this suburb through the eyes of various middle-class young mums; the snapshots of each show an unremitting dissatisfaction with their husbands and children and their place in a man's world.
I LOVED Cusk's prose but started to get fed up with these moany privileged women!
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Format: Paperback
I was given this book by my brother's girlfriend and having heard good things about Cusk was intrigued as to how it would pan out.

As other reviewers here have written, it was a distinctly average book, with very average boring and predictable characters. I could see how Cusk could maybe have been cocking a snook at posh wife/husband combo in the first chapter and the materialistic Christine in the shopping mall but I just didn't see how they really connected and just when Cusk developed a character (the Japanese houseguest or the Italian student houseguest) enough to draw your interest in, then it was abruptly dragged from under your feet afterwards. I really didn't see the point of this book, it illustrated suburbia all too well and was well written in parts but I really found it extremely boring and something I would not recommend. I am even thinking twice before donating it to a friend!
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By Lovely Treez TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 24 Sept. 2010
Format: Paperback
This is my first encounter with the writing of Rachel Cusk although this is her sixth novel and was shortlisted for the 2007 Orange Prize for Fiction. The novel opens with rain and a dreary ambiance which persists in permeating the whole text. This is a story about a day in the life of five 30-something married women, detailing all the humdrum activities with which they fill their hours - manic morning getting the kids to school, grocery shopping, coffee at the local shopping mall, cooking and cleaning, vapid dinner party conversation.

Juliet is a part-time teacher married to Benedict, a pleasant English teacher but she is seething with resentment at what her life has become

All men are murderers, Juliet thought. All of them. They murder women. They take a woman and, little by little, they murder her.

Solly, perpetually pregnant, lives her life vicariously through the lives of the single female lodgers who rent a room in her home. Christine, as uptight and taut as a rubber band, realises how rubbish her life is but is determined to plough on through it. Amanda, with her pristine, spotless house and beige carpets, just wants to be in control. Maisie, newly arrived from London, is finding it hard to fit into her new life.

Rachel Cusk is undoubtedly a very gifted and elegant writer. This is a very well written novel although sometimes it felt a bit "over-written" and the author's hand became too obvious. She takes the minutiae of domestic life and elevates them with beautiful, lyrical prose.
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Format: Paperback
A fairly furious and dark polemic against marriage, motherhood, men women and children. Cusk conveys the frustration and bitterness of middle class surburbian life well, sometimes extremely well, but there's little to leaven the bleakness of the shallow existences of her characters. Even the character (male) who is a brilliant teacher to no-hoper boys is ridiculous. If i compare this feminist leaning novel with, for example, any of Marge Piercy's oeuvre Braided Lives (sadly I believe out of print), Woman on the Edge of Time (A Women's Press classic), there is a depth, rounded characterisations and sympathy/understanding in French and Piercy which Cusk misses.

Cusk is a good descriptive writer - though this sometimes seems very self-consciously 'literary', for example the 'day in the life' chapter about the park, but when a writer seems to be showing off her fine turn of phrase and pictorial ability, this is the display of fine writing, rather than the inhabiting of it.

She's clearly an intelligent, insightful and perceptive writer, but stands at too much of a remove from the bleak and messy humanity she writes about.

For a very very different habitation of female existential despair Cusk makes me want to return to the wonderful, intelligent and deeply felt The Bell Jar
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Having read the reviews (both on this site, on the book cover and in the press) I had high hopes for this book. Unfortunately it did not live up to the hype. Yes, it's well written, and yes it's a comment on how we live now. However, it's such a 'glass half empty' book that it feels like a long slog to the end. If you want to read about a bunch of privileged women complaining bitterly about their lives then perhaps this book is for you. For me, it covers no new territory and has a serious sense of humour failure. What it does achieve, however, is to make you feel very glad that you are not in the well-heeled shoes of the women of Arlington Park.
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