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  • Published: 19 February 2019
  • ISBN: 9780241977569
  • Imprint: Penguin General UK
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 208
  • RRP: $22.99

The Cost of Living

Living Autobiography 2




Dazzling, essential, unlike anything else published today - a memoir on modern womanhood, smashing through social expectations and making the case for thrilling, transformative freedom

What does it mean to be free - as an artist, a woman, a mother or daughter? And what is the price of that freedom?

In this dazzling memoir, Deborah Levy confronts the essential questions of modern womanhood with humour, pragmatism, and profoundly resonant wisdom. Reflecting onthe period when she wrote the Man Booker Prize-shortlisted Hot Milk - when her mother was dying, her daughters were leaving home, her marriage was coming to an end - she is characteristically eloquent on the social expectations and surreal realities of daily life. And expanding far beyond these bounds, she describes a uniquely frank, wise and thrilling manifesto for female experience: embracing the exhilarating terror of freedom, seeking to understand what that freedom could mean and how it might feel.

  • Published: 19 February 2019
  • ISBN: 9780241977569
  • Imprint: Penguin General UK
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 208
  • RRP: $22.99

About the author

Deborah Levy

Deborah Levy writes fiction, plays and poetry. Her work has been staged by the Royal Shakespeare Company, and she is the author of numerous books, including the essay 'Things I Don't Want to Know'and the early novels Swallowing Geography and Beautiful Mutants. Her novel Swimming Home was shortlisted for the 2012 Man Booker Prize, 2012 Specsavers National Book Awards and 2013 Jewish Quarterly Wingate Prize.

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Praise for The Cost of Living

This, from Deborah Levy, is exceptional. A memoir of life, art and separation. How to write when you're broke, have no writing space, are a parent. Also: crushed chickens, electric bikes, plumbing. Out in May and an early contender for one of the books of the year

Sinead Gleeson

Ingenious, practical and dryly amused... This is a manifesto for a risky, radical kind of life, out of your depth but swimming all the same

New Statesman

Extraordinary and beautiful, suffused with wit and razor sharp insights

Financial Times

Wise, subtle and ironic, Levy is a brilliant writer... Each sentence is a small masterpiece of clarity and poise. That shed should be endowed with a blue plaque

Telegraph

It is the story of every woman throughout history who has expended her love and labour on making a home that turns out to serve the needs of everyone except herself... A piece of work that is not so much a memoir as an eloquent manifesto for what Levy calls 'a new way of living' in the post-familial world

Guardian

Deborah Levy is a most generous writer. What is wonderful about this short, sensual, embattled memoir is that it is not only about the painful landmarks in her life - the end of a marriage , the death of a mother - it is about what it is to be alive. I can't think of any other writer aside from Virginia Woolf who writes better about the liminal, the domestic, the non-event, and what it is to be a woman... This is a little book about a big subject. It is about how to find a new way of living

Observer

A heady, absorbing read

Evening Standard

Both memoir and feminist manifesto, her writing focuses so sharply on what it means to be alive that she's given me much-needed clarity...Levy subtly informs us about what it is to be a woman.

Vogue

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