18 September, 2021

LitStack Pick: The Lines We Wish We’d Written

At LastAt last
Edward St. Aubyn

Sometimes you come across a sentence, or maybe a book’s worth, that brings a knowledge you can shake thereafter, an insight you can’t unsee. And maybe you’ve spent part of 2012 reading Edward St. Aubyn’s books. The author of seven novels, St. Aubyn is a writer of fiercely keen prose whose serialized Patrick Melrose Novels concluded in 2012 with At Last. His work has floored such writers as Ann Patchett and Michael Chabon—along with critic James Wood, who wrote last year,

There is an almost vaudevillian pleasure in St. Aubyn’s diamantine badinage.”

That—and more.

Meanwhile, to borrow a phrase from Patchett, the surgical intensity of St. Aubyn’s prose makes my pick an easy choice. This line is so great, it speaks proverbial volumes, and does so with a brilliance equaled only by the cutting truth it contains:

Resentment is drinking the poison and hoping someone else will die.”

 -Lauren Alwan

2 thoughts on “LitStack Pick: The Lines We Wish We’d Written

  1. This is, so far, one of my favorite LitStack Picks of all time. I’m definitely favoriting it so I can turn back to these lines and recommendations when trying to figure out which book I need to read next.

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