Scenes from a Woman's Life
By Kathryn Harrison
(Random House Trade Paperbacks, Paperback, 9780812972054, 208pp.)
Publication Date: June 1, 2004
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A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK
In this exquisite book of personal reflections on a woman’s life as a child, wife, and mother, Kathryn Harrison, “a writer of extraordinary gifts” (Tobias Wolff), recalls episodes in her life, exploring how the experiences of childhood recur in memory, to be transformed and sometimes healed through the lives we lead as adults. At the heart of Seeking Rapture is the notion that a woman’s journey is a continuous process of transformation, an ongoing transcendence and re-creation of self.
Kathryn Harrison is the author of the novels The Seal Wife, The Binding Chair, Poison, Exposure, and Thicker Than Water. She has also written a memoir, The Kiss. Her personal essays, including some from the collection Seeking Rapture, have appeared in The New Yorker, Harper’s magazine, and other publications. She lives in New York with her husband, the novelist Colin Harrison, and their children. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Seeking Rapture is the biography of a hungry heart. . . . Affecting, beautifully crafted autobiographical meditations.”
—The Boston Globe
“Revealing . . . [Harrison] has produced enthralling essays that bring to mind the robust metaphysics of Kathleen Norris and Patricia Hampl. Kathryn Harrison has challenged herself—and won—with her passionate, rigorous thinking on family bonds and family bondage, and the mysterious intersections of body and spirit.”
—The New York Times Book Review
“[A] rich collection . . . Harrison aims, over the distance of time and often with dazzling accuracy, for unflinching display of motivations. . . . Such fastidious recall is a Proustian gift. With all due regard for her achievement as a novelist, Harrison appears Proust-like in another respect: She is her own truest subject, an unending wellspring of emotion and restless quest.”
—Los Angeles Times
“Harrison remains a master of her craft, with musings that are lyrical, insightful, and haunting.”
“It’s her fierce devotion to her absent mother that gives this book its shimmering grace.”
“Poignant glimpses into the life of a survivor.”
“The prose sings....Harrison [is] at her thoughtful, provocative best, mindful of the flaws and desires within everyone.”
More than 150 writers from 40 events will gather in New York City for PEN World Voices Festival of International Literature, April 28 – May 4, 2014.
For its 10th anniversary, the festival celebrates those who have dared to stand ‘on the edge,’ risking their careers, and sometimes their lives, to speak out for their art and beliefs. Join us for a wide range of events, including debates, one-on-one conversations, participatory workshops and performances in venues throughout the city. Use the code PEN14 (use PEN2014 for events at The Public Theater) and receive a 20 percent discount on most events. www.worldvoicesfestival.org