Ongoingness

Sarah Manguso

3.95 based on 2109 ratings & 311 reviews on Goodreads.com
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09 August 2018
9781509883295
96 pages
Synopsis

'This small-sized book has immense power. Marvel at the clarity and fire.' Zadie Smith

Sarah Manguso kept a meticulous diary for twenty-five years. ‘I wanted to end each day with a record of everything that had ever happened,’ she explains. But this simple statement conceals a terror that she might miss out something important. Maintaining that diary became a daily attempt to remember every detail, to stop the passage of time.

Then Manguso became pregnant and had a child, and these two events slowly and irrevocably changed her relationship to her life and also to her diary.

In this moving memoir Sarah Manguso confesses her life long struggle to let go. Ongoingness is a beautiful, daring and honest and shifting work that grapples with writing and motherhood.

After I had my son I looked everywhere for a book that might serve as some kind of mirror. I bought so many silly books. Now I see what the problem was: I wanted a book about time--about mortality. I can't think of a writer who is at once so formally daring and so rigorously uncompromising as Sarah Manguso. Ongoingness is an incredibly elegant, wise book, and I loved it.

Miranda July

Written without vanity, Ongoingness is a sparse, poignant essay on mortality, memory and transience, and how her experience of these has changed after motherhood.

Financial Times

The memoir form is shaken up and reinvented in this brilliant meditation on time and record-keeping. Ongoingness is a short book but there's nothing small about it. Sarah Manguso covers vast territory with immense subtlety and enviable wit.

Jenny Offill