Posts Tagged ‘Girls reading’

"Girl Reading", by Katie Ward. Virago paperback cover (from Katie Ward's website)

“Girl Reading”, by Katie Ward. Virago paperback cover (from Katie Ward’s website)

This is Katie Ward’s first novel, and a wonderfully intricate work which would be impressive were it her third, or fourth, or whateverth work. It doesn’t come across as a story as much as it does a series of scenes all of are built around variations on a particular image – a girl or a woman reading a book. We move forward through time with each scene, from 1333 to 2060. I can’t properly describe the chapters as individual stories, as there is no real beginning or ending, just some time spent with the characters, frequently stepping in at the start, the middle, or the end of their stories, but never including all three such parts together. The woman reading is the shared experience, as expressed in the opening quote from Jung’s ‘Synchronicity: an acausal connecting principle’ (Collected Works, vol. 8):

You can never say with certainty that what appears to be going on in the collective unconscious of a single individual is not also happening in other individuals or organisms or things or situations.


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