Books by Christine Schutt

PURE HOLLYWOOD by Christine Schutt
Released: March 13, 2018

"Intimate portrayals of darkness told in Schutt's tight and affecting prose."
Ten stories and a novella that give us oblique glimpses of tragedy. Read full book review >
PROSPEROUS FRIENDS by Christine Schutt
Released: Nov. 6, 2012

"This material does not do justice to Schutt's sharp-edged vision of contemporary mores."
This third novel from Schutt (All Souls, 2008, etc.) is the desultory story of an unhappy marriage. Read full book review >
ALL SOULS by Christine Schutt
Released: April 1, 2008

"Although appropriate to a travelogue of an insular world, the diffuse focus weakens the narrative drive. Still, the spare prose, every word freighted with meaning, rewards repeated readings."
A year (1997) in the lives of seniors at an exclusive Manhattan girls' school. Read full book review >
Released: June 29, 2005

"Unparalleled etchings of loss and foreboding."
Eleven new stories from stylist Schutt attain a haunting beauty in elegiac moments. Read full book review >
FLORIDA by Christine Schutt
Released: Oct. 1, 2003

"Still, despite the weaknesses: a dazzling start for a writer we want to hear from again."
Often brilliantly written if far too brief first novel from Schutt (Nightwork, stories: 2000) about a dotty AWOL mother and her young daughter set adrift among rich relatives in the Midwest Read full book review >
NIGHTWORK by Christine Schutt
Released: May 7, 1996

A debut collection made up of 17 stories (or, in some cases, slivers of story) told in voices flattened by despair. The narrators here are mostly nameless, and the uneasy territory of their subject matter cannot readily be labeled. In the opening piece, ``You Drive,'' a grown daughter and her father cross the boundaries of any usual parent-child relationship as they sit in a car, sharing secrets, kissing and memorizing the smell and texture of one another's skin. In ``What Have You Been Doing?,'' it's a mother and son who kiss: ``She was out of practice and he wanted practice. . . . In the middle of rooms she obliged, in her bedroom, his bedroom, a kissing done standing, her hands on his shoulders, his not quite on her waist, heads tilted, mouths open.'' Another mother, in ``Teachers,'' tells her daughter details about her lover while the girl yearns to get away, begging to be allowed just to go off to school. The spareness of Schutt's prose, in combination with her elliptical storylines, can make certain pieces (notably ``Giovanni and Giovanna'' and ``His Chorus'') difficult to decipher at all. But when she works with more accessible themes, the results are powerful, as in ``Daywork,'' where two adult daughters guiltily clean out the attic of their mother's house as she lies dying in the hospital, and ``To Have and To Hold,'' as a spurned wife acts upon her anger and grief in her tiny and terrifyingly tidy kitchen. Schutt is good at small, sharp moments, and she chooses words with the care of a poet. But effective as some of these tales are, others feel fragmentary, incomplete. Taken all together, they're finally overwhelming in the uniform grimness of their point of view. Razor-sharp writing in stories sliced a little too thin—and admittedly close to the bone. Read full book review >