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Summary

Outline is a novel in 10 conversations. Spare and lucid, it follows a novelist teaching a course in creative writing over an oppressively hot summer in Athens. She leads her student in storytelling exercises. She meets other writers for dinner. She goes swimming in the Ionian Sea with her seatmate from the place. The people she encounters speak volubly about themselves, their fantasies, anxieties, pet theories, regrets and longings. And through these disclosures, a portrait of the narrator is drawn by contrast, a portrait of a woman learning to face great a great loss.

Outline is the first book in a short and yet epic cycle - a masterful trilogy which will be remembered as one of the most significant achievements of our times.

©2014 Rachel Cusk (P)2020 Faber Audio

What listeners say about Outline

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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Musings on the craft of writing

Outline contains a lot of musings on the craft of writing and for that, I found it an inspiring and thoughtful, as well as thought-provoking read. I loved the small stories within the story (a writer teaching a writing class was the perfect device for delivering these), that felt a bit like actual writing exercises and made me realize that any experience can become a story, no matter how seemingly trivial. I listened to it during my summer staycation and it was afforded me the quiet I was craving, to go around in my own thoughts, weeding the garden or drinking a glass of wine in the greenhouse while hanging out with my favorite cat. It also made me want to return to my neglected novel project. The narrator was actress Kirsten Scott Thomas and she clearly had to redo some parts from inside a barrel and then whoever had to edit it didn’t put it back together very skillfully, as the sound levels and audio quality were all over the place in spots. But overall, a quiet, gentle musing on the craft of writing.

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beware of attempt at Greek accent!

Great book - interesting story line and quite original. However, the reader's Greek accent is very bad.

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Excellently written book marred by its performance

The structure and finely observed narrative undermined by Kristin Scott Thomas’ cringe making phoney Greek accents.

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Great book

I quite liked this book and the conversations narrated were highly intriguing! As a Greek myself however, I could not help but cringe a little bit at the bizarre accent the narrator put on when pretending to be a Greek character.

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Interesting concepts, bad Greek accents

I found this very soothing to listen to while falling asleep and Kristen Scott Thomas’ voice is certainly very soothing, but she seems to emphasise the wrong parts of sentences and her Greek accents are a little bit comical (not what I think was the intended affect). I didn’t not enjoy this though.