On Marriage and Separation

Book - 2012
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Baker & Taylor
A well-known memoirist and novelist presents an intense study on divorce and its place in modern society, discussing the pain that accompanies ending a relationship but also the new opportunities it presents. 15,000 first printing.

McMillan Palgrave

In 2003, Rachel Cusk published A Life's Work, a provocative and often startlingly funny memoir about the cataclysm of motherhood. Widely acclaimed, the book started hundreds of arguments that continue to this day. Now, in her most personal and relevant book to date, Cusk explores divorce's tremendous impact on the lives of women.

An unflinching chronicle of Cusk's own recent separation and the upheaval that followed--"a jigsaw dismantled"--it is also a vivid study of divorce's complex place in our society. "Aftermath" originally signified a second harvest, and in this book, unlike any other written on the subject, Cusk discovers opportunity as well as pain. With candor as fearless as it is affecting, Rachel Cusk maps a transformative chapter of her life with an acuity and wit that will help us understand our own.

Book News
In one of her previous memoirs, A Life's Work, Rachel Cusk laid bare the conflicting feelings of new motherhood. In this memoir, she writes of her breakdown after her ten-year marriage ends, and of the fleeting moments of freedom in the midst of chaos. Cusk at first hovers above the pain in the lofty heights of Greek drama and feminist ideology, but eventually touches down to the heart of her despair with haunting prose revealing her anxiety and guilt through everyday moments: the botched vacation, her daughter's exclusion at a birthday party, the terrible homemade cake her family must eat anyway. The book ends with a short story offering what may be a portrait of the last months of the author's marriage, as seen through the eyes of a young Russian woman who works as a domestic in the household. The book was originally published in 2012 by Faber and Faber Limited, Great Britain. Annotation ©2013 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

& Taylor

Presents a study on divorce and its place in modern society from the perspective of the recently-divorced author, discussing the pain that accompanies ending a relationship as well as the new opportunities it presents.

Publisher: New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2012
Edition: 1st American ed
ISBN: 9780374102135
Branch Call Number: 823.914 CUS
823.914 CUS
Characteristics: 146 p. ; 22 cm


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Apr 30, 2017

Beautifully written. Relishing the phrasing in this book. Cusk has the ability to be brutally honest with herself and the bravery to share this with the world. Not sure what has put the other reviewers off. This book is a find.

Jun 17, 2014

Infuriating, narcisstic, self-absorbed and clinical. Despite what she says, Cusk is not a feminist. Yes, she writes well and is intelligent, but to what end? Extremely disappointing.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at BPL

To Top