Duffy is best known for her sharp insights and sharper wit, and both are on display here...Brave, understated and unforgettable' DAILY MAIL When Jack and Cindy meet at a friend's party they are immediately attracted to one another. Cindy, a celebrated mapmaker, traces the contours of their relationship, from New York to LA, from first passion to real love. After five years together, Cindy and Jack think they have tested their love to its limits. But then Cindy falls dangerously ill, and the couple must face the hardest test of all. Told with wit, tenderness and unflinching honesty, STATE OF HAPPINESS is a captivating story of love and loss from a writer at the height of her powers. 'STATE OF HAPPINESS is a sharp, sobering cocktail spiked with metaphysic, immense good humour and understanding. Stella Duffy gets better and better' Ali Smith, author of HOTEL WORLD
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(198mm x 126mm x 18mm)
Virago Press Ltd
Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group
Country of Publication:
US Kirkus Review »
A cartographer and big-selling author charts the progress of her cancer. Despite her babyish first name, Cindy Frier is no giddy scribbler of contemporary fluff. What's in a name, anyway? In British author Duffy's latest (Wavewalker, 1996, etc.), the answer is everything. Cindy wrote her thesis on the hidden meaning of maps and mapmaking. (For confused readers, the forced connection here is place names.) Then she turned it into an acclaimed book with the pretentious and oddly punctuated title Dis-Location-the function of space over time: Naming as Generation. (Should anyone doubt the worth of this unlikely bestseller, arcane quotes from it preface each chapter.) Apparently a "hungry public" just can't get enough of the hitherto-unplumbed subject of mapmaking metaphysics, or of Cindy's incredible ability to combine "measured truths with potential magic." Other fun facts about Cindy: She's only 26. She has great skin. She likes to munch on pistachios, which she keeps in her pocket. In other words, she's sort of real. Prickly by nature and resentful of her fame, Cindy warms up to working-class, mixed-race British reporter Jack Stratton at a Manhattan party. For some inexplicable reason, he's given a TV news show of his very own shortly thereafter, in Los Angeles. The lovers move to southern California, while Cindy thinks deep and generally incomprehensible thoughts on the meaning of that journey, with a few nods to all journeys made by humanity throughout time, etc. But it's not long before Cindy is diagnosed with breast cancer and turns to creating a detailed physical and psychological map of that experience, from the devouring of the body to the corrosive effect upon the soul. Duffy, herself a survivor of breast cancer, spares no details. Chilly and pretentious fictionalizing of a devastating disease. (Kirkus Reviews)
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Author Biography - Stella Duffy
Stella Duffy is the author of seven novels and the Saz Martin crime series. She has published over thirty short stories, many feature articles, and also writes for radio and theatre. Stella Duffy was born in the UK, grew up in New Zealand and now lives in London. In addition to her writing work she is an actor and improviser.