The Transcriptionist

The Transcriptionist

By Amy Rowland

Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, Paperback, 9781616204501, 272pp.

Publication Date: January 2015

Haunting and provocative . . . Rowland's writing is compelling and masterful. Delia Ephron, author of "The Lion Is In" Once, there were many transcriptionists at the "Record, " a behemoth New York City newspaper, but new technology has put most of them out of work. So now Lena, the last transcriptionist, sits alone in a room--a human conduit, silently turning reporters recorded stories into print--until the day she encounters a story so shocking that it shatters the reverie that has become her life. This exquisite novel, written by an author who spent more than a decade as a transcriptionist at the "New York Times, " asks probing questions about journalism and ethics, about the decline of the newspaper and the failure of language. It is also the story of a woman's effort to establish her place in an increasingly alien and alienating world. "The Transcriptionist" is suffused with prescient insight into journalism, ethics, and alienation . . . A thought provoking, original work. "New York Journal of Books " Rowland seems that rare thing, the naturally gifted novelist . . . She] deftly maps a very specific kind of urban loneliness, the inner ache of the intelligent, damaged soul who prefers the company of ideas and words to that of people . . . That urge--to make words holy--is at the heart of this novel's strange, sad beauty. "The Washington Post" "The Transcriptionist" holds many pleasures . . . and] can be read through many lenses . . . Rowland plays with the notions of truth and reliability . . . Sharp and affecting. "The New York Times Book Review" A strange, mesmerizing novel . . . about the decline of newspapers and the subsequent loss of humanity and yes, these are related. "Booklist, "starred review Ambitious and fascinating . . . Disturbing and powerful. "Library Journal" Entering the city Rowland creates, with its tightly strung dialogue and soulful, lonely citizens, is a memorable experience. "The Boston Globe" Unforgettable. Written with such delight, compassion, and humanity it's newsworthy. Alex Gilvarry, author of "From the Memoirs of a Non-Enemy Combatant.

About the Author
Amy Rowland has spent more than a decade at the" New York Times", where she worked, notably, as a transcriptionist before moving to the Book Review. Her articles have appeared in numerous publications, including the "New York Times, " the "Smart Set", and the "Utne Reader". She lives in New York City.