Unfinished Business: Notes of a Chronic Re-reader

Vivian Gornick
Published in 2020
by Farrar, Straus and Giroux

“I sometimes think I was born reading,” writes Vivian Gornick in Unfinished Business: Notes of a Chronic Re-reader, a collection of essays that tracks the books the critic and memoirist has read over and over again, helping to shape her storied life and prolific writing career. Through incisive and intimate writing, Gornick finds herself identifying with opposing characters in D. H. Lawrence’s Sons and Lovers, and considering the veracity of memory through Marguerite Duras’s The Lover, as well as discussing the prose of writers such as Elizabeth Bowen, Natalia Ginzburg, and Doris Lessing. Part memoir and literary criticism, Gornick’s book is a reminder of the importance of reading for a writer’s life and how it helps one “feel the power of Life with a capital L.” 


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