The Beginner's Guide to Living

The Beginner's Guide to Living

By Lia Hills

Farrar Straus Giroux, Hardcover, 9780374306595, 221pp.

Publication Date: October 12, 2010


Seven days after his mother dies in a sudden, senseless accident, seventeen-year-old Will embarks on a search for meaning that leads him to the great philosophers Plato, Seneca, Kierkegaard, Nietzsche and to Taryn, the beautiful girl he meets at his mother's wake. Will is desperate to find, however he can, something authentic, something ultimate, something so true he would live or die for it. But is he willing to risk losing Taryn losing "everything"--to seek the answers he craves?

About the Author
Lia Hills is a poet, novelist and translator living in Melbourne. Her work has been published, performed and translated both in Australia and overseas, and has won numerous awards. She is editor and co-initiator of the poetry section of Moving Galleries, a poetry/art project on trains in Melbourne. Her forthcoming publications include a crossover novel, The Beginner's Guide to Living (Text Publishing), and a translation of Marie Darrieussecq's acclaimed novel, Tom Est Mort, from French into English.

Praise For The Beginner's Guide to Living

 “…Acutely insightful…the mosaic of imagery and musings in [Will’s] poetic, staccato narration offers thought-provoking ideas about grief and the universal drive to find a purpose. Although this novel begins with a death, it is a celebration of life, companionship, and love.” —Publishers Weekly, STARRED review

 “Hills’s rich imagery and masterful storytelling come together to create a tale that is both poetic and compelling. . . A well-crafted story from a new voice.” —Kirkus Reviews, STARRED review

“Set in Melbourne, Australia, Hills’ debut explores grief, first love, and first sex with poetic frankness that although occasionally mannered is also refreshing, whether Will is feeling suffocated by well-meaning neighbors or awestruck and alive as he imagines a map of the universe in Taryn’s freckled face.” —Booklist