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The Last of Her Kind

The Last of Her Kind

A Novel

Sigrid Nunez

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

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The paths of two women from different walks of life intersect amid counterculture of the 1960s in this haunting and provocative novel from the National Book Award-winning author of The Friend

Named a Best Book of the Year by the San Francisco Chronicle and the
Christian Science Monitor

Sigrid Nunez's The Last of Her Kind introduces two women who meet as freshmen on the Columbia campus in 1968. Georgette George does not know what to make of her brilliant, idealistic roommate, Ann Drayton, and her obsessive disdain for the ruling class into which she was born. She is mortified by Ann's romanticization of the underprivileged class, which Georgette herself is hoping college will enable her to escape. After the violent fight that ends their friendship, Georgette wants only to forget Ann and to turn her attention to the troubled runaway kid sister who has reappeared after years on the road. Then, in 1976, Ann is convicted of murder. At first, Ann's fate appears to be the inevitable outcome of her belief in the moral imperative to "make justice" in a world where "there are no innocent white people." But, searching for answers to the riddle of this friend of her youth, Georgette finds more complicated and mysterious forces at work.

The novel's narrator Georgette illuminates the terrifying life of this difficult, doomed woman, and in the process discovers how much their early encounter has determined her own path, and why, decades later, as she tells us, "I have never stopped thinking… More…

The paths of two women from different walks of life intersect amid counterculture of the 1960s in this haunting and provocative novel from the National Book Award-winning author of The Friend

Named a Best Book of the Year by the San Francisco Chronicle and the
Christian Science Monitor

Sigrid Nunez's The Last of Her Kind introduces two women who meet as freshmen on the Columbia campus in 1968. Georgette George does not know what to make of her brilliant, idealistic roommate, Ann Drayton, and her obsessive disdain for the ruling class into which she was born. She is mortified by Ann's romanticization of the underprivileged class, which Georgette herself is hoping college will enable her to escape. After the violent fight that ends their friendship, Georgette wants only to forget Ann and to turn her attention to the troubled runaway kid sister who has reappeared after years on the road. Then, in 1976, Ann is convicted of murder. At first, Ann's fate appears to be the inevitable outcome of her belief in the moral imperative to "make justice" in a world where "there are no innocent white people." But, searching for answers to the riddle of this friend of her youth, Georgette finds more complicated and mysterious forces at work.

The novel's narrator Georgette illuminates the terrifying life of this difficult, doomed woman, and in the process discovers how much their early encounter has determined her own path, and why, decades later, as she tells us, "I have never stopped thinking about her."

Less…

Excerpted from The Last of Her Kind by Sigrid Nunez. Copyright © 2006 by Sigrid Nunez. Published January 2006 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux, LLC. All rights reserved.

We had been living together for about a week when my roommate...

Praise for The Last of Her Kind

“[A] carefully written and discerning narrative with closely drawn portraits of two prototypical yet unique women trying to construct a friendship across an unbridgeable class divide. . .Nunez's keen powers of observation make her a natural chronicler.” —Megan Marshall, The New York Times Book Review

“A writer of Nunez's piercing intelligence and post-feminist consciousness may well feel that writing the Great American Novel is no longer a feasible or worthwhile goal--but damned if she hasn't gone and done it anyway.” —Andrew O'Hehir, Salon.com

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Reviews from Goodreads

Sigrid Nunez

Sigrid Nunez's novel For Rouenna was a 2001 New York Times Notable Book. She has been the recipient of several awards, including a Whiting Writers' Award, the Rome Prize in Literature, and a Berlin Prize Fellowship. She lives in New York.

image of Sigrid Nunezo
©Marion Ettlinger

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

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