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"She believed she could, so she did." - R.S. Grey
"She believed she could, so she did." - R.S. Grey

The Year of Reading Proust: A Memoir in Real Time

By Phyllis RoseMarcel Proust
Book Details
  • Author: Phyllis RoseMarcel Proust
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Published: 1997-10-08
  • Edition: First Edition
You don't have to live through an unhappy childhood or a celebrity adulthood to write an autobiography. You need patience, an almost reckless candor, and a close-to-scientific pursuit of truth. This is what Rose learned from Proust, and she puts the hypothesis to the test in The Year of Reading Proust. Opening with a bravura description of the experience of reading In Search of Lost Time - which freed her to write about her own life - she goes on to describe experiences as ordinary as channel surfing and as remarkable as a visit to a hermit. In a work that's striking in its honesty, she writes about marriage, friendship, childbirth, and intimations of mortality. She tells the story of a failed romance and enduring friendship with a man who happens to be gay; of caring for an elderly mother who gets sharper mentally as her body decays; and of giving a dinner party for a guest whose identity is unknown. Kaleidoscopically, with wit and insight, Rose provides a model for the enjoyment of daily life as she writes about her days on a college campus, in the city, in a winter writer's roost. Each chapter is keyed to another book that was important to the author during her year of reading Proust, and she moves from daily experience to what she's read and back again in subtle celebration of how books can help you live.

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