OVERRIDE

Inglorious

A Novel

Joanna Kavenna

Picador

Winner of the Orange Broadband Award for New Writers

One day successful young journalist and dedicated urbanite Rosa Lane sends her boss an e-mail that says “I quit” and then walks out of her job. She can't explain why—not to Liam, who’s lived with her for years; not to her friends; not to her anxious, recently widowed father. All Rosa knows is that she needs to find enlightenment, to somehow understand her mother’s death and do more than just earn her living.

Thus begins the piercingly wise and bitingly funny odyssey of Rosa Lane. Along the way, she is deceived by her lover, evicted by her roommate, threatened by her bank manager, picked over by prospective employers, befuddled by philosophy, and tormented by omnivorous London. Brought very low indeed, Rosa in her desperation makes a final assault on those who have done her wrong, leading to the beginning of her return to normality—whatever that is.

In a remarkable fiction debut, Joanna Kavenna displays lacerating wit, a perfect eye for social hypocrisies, and great depths of compassion to create a triumphant modern heroine.

BOOK EXCERPTS

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INGLORIOUS
RetreatShe began it on an ordinary summer's day when she found--quite in contravention of the orders of her boss--she was idling at the computer, kicking her heels and counting. Rosa Lane, thirty-five and several months, aware of an invisible stopwatch tolling her down, was counting the years, the hours spent sitting in offices, staring at the sky, at the flickering screen that was sending her blind. She had passed the previous ten years in a holding position, her legs locked under a table. She had typed a million emails and strained her wrists. She was no closer to understanding
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REVIEWS

Praise for Inglorious

"Honest, brilliant, arresting, and barefisted. Kavenna finds humor in the abyss, light in the dark, and ultimately exhilaration at the end of the tunnel."--André Aciman, author of Call Me by Your Name and Out of Egypt

 

"Kavenna writes with elegance and flair, endowing Rosa with a graceful articulacy. . . . [She] also has a mordant way with social satire."--The New York Times Book Review

 

"Joanna Kavenna's first novel, Inglorious, is a trip worth taking. . . . It is the journey itself, not the destination, that makes this lovely and wrenching novel worth the ride."--Los Angeles Times

 

"[Kavenna's] understanding of the complexity of depression and her evocation of her heroine's bewilderment are precise, and Rosa, for all her misery, has an appealing and often funny voice."--The New Yorker

 

"[Kavenna] renders crisp, piercing prose."--Booklist

 

"If Franz Kafka had lived in the early 21st century and been female, English, and a bit cheekier, he might have produced a work like Joanna Kavenna's delightful debut novel. . . . Anyone who has ever had a less than positive view of his or her circumstances will revel in Kavenna's book."--The Baltimore Messenger

Reviews from Goodreads

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Joanna Kavenna

  • JOANNA KAVENNA is the author of The Ice Museum: In Search of the Lost Land of Thule. She has written for The New York Review of Books, The Guardian, and The Times Literary Supplement, among other publications.

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Available Formats and Book Details

Inglorious

A Novel

Joanna Kavenna

Orange Broadband Prize for Fiction - Winner, Orange Broadband Prize for Fiction - Winner

BOOKS FOR COURSES AVAILABLE

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FROM THE PUBLISHER

Picador

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