Her Body Knows

Two Novellas

David Grossman

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

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A fevered storyteller and a captive audience revisit the past together in each of David Grossman's new novellas, trying to make sense of a betrayal that neither one can put to rest.

In "Frenzy," reserved, respectable Shaul lets his sister-in-law, Esti, into a secret nightmare, as he reveals to her his conviction that his wife is having an affair. Along with Esti, we find ourselves trapped in his paranoia and desperation as we accompany the odd pair down Israel’s highways on a journey that reveals a passion perverted by jealousy and self-loathing.

In the title story, a successful but embittered novelist visits her mother, who is in the last stages of cancer. Grossman investigates the powers of storytelling to harm and heal as the daughter reads aloud her own imagined, merciless account of her mother's love affair with a much younger teenage boy. Gradually it becomes clear that, for all its anger, the daughter’s story and the writing process itself have led her to a new appreciation of her mother's difficult character, and her own.

Studies in obssession, claustrophobia, and the need to confess, these two novellas mark a new departure from "a writer who has been, for nearly two decades, the one of the most original and talented ... anywhere." (The New York Times Book Review).

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Book Excerpts

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  Her Body Knows
FrenzyHow does she do it? he wonders. Over and over again, the meticulous rituals she must perform and the nervous scurrying through rooms before leaving, slamming closet doors, opening and closing drawers. An impenetrable expression grips her lovely face during those moments—God forbid she should forget a comb or a book or a bottle of shampoo, or everything might collapse. He sits at his empty desk with his head in his hands as she tosses him a quick goodbye from the door, and his heart sinks: she didn’t even come near him to take her leave.

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Reviews

Praise for Her Body Knows

"There isn't a more interesting novelist in the West today... If the Middle East has broken David Grossman's mighty heart, a howl is all that's left for the rest of us." --John Leonard, Harper's Magazine

"We should all thank heaven that the world has such writers in it... Grossman's sympathetic and perceptive writing goes to the very heart of the most complicated dilemmas in the Arab-Israeli crisis." --Amy Wilentz, The Los Angeles Times

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About the Author

David Grossman

David Grossman is the author of six novels and two works of journalism. He lives in Jerusalem.

David Grossman

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Available Formats and Book Details

Her Body Knows
Two Novellas
David Grossman

e-Book Agency

e-Book Agency
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
July 2006
e-Book Agency
ISBN: 9781429929943
ISBN10: 1429929944
272 pages
$9.99

Trade Paperback

Trade Paperback
Picador
July 2006
Trade Paperback
ISBN: 9780312425050
ISBN10: 0312425058
5 1/2 x 8 1/4 inches, 272 pages
$17.00
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From The Publisher

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

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