This Is Pleasure: A Story

This Is Pleasure: A Story

by Mary Gaitskill
This Is Pleasure: A Story

This Is Pleasure: A Story

by Mary Gaitskill



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Starting with Bad Behavior in the 1980s, Mary Gaitskill has been writing about gender relations with searing, even prophetic honesty. In This Is Pleasure, she considers our present moment through the lens of a particular #MeToo incident.
The effervescent, well-dressed Quin, a successful book editor and fixture on the New York arts scene, has been accused of repeated unforgivable transgressions toward women in his orbit. But are they unforgivable? And who has the right to forgive him? To Quin’s friend Margot, the wrongdoing is less clear. Alternating Quin’s and Margot’s voices and perspectives, Gaitskill creates a nuanced tragicomedy, one that reveals her characters as whole persons—hurtful and hurting, infuriating and touching, and always deeply recognizable.
Gaitskill has said that fiction is the only way that she could approach this subject because it is too emotionally faceted to treat in the more rational essay form. Her compliment to her characters—and to her readers—is that they are unvarnished and real. Her belief in our ability to understand them, even when we don’t always admire them, is a gesture of humanity from one of our greatest contemporary writers.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781524749149
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date: 11/05/2019
Sold by: Random House
Format: eBook
Pages: 96
File size: 722 KB

About the Author

MARY GAITSKILL, whose most recent book is Somebody with a Little Hammer: Essays, is the author of the story collections Bad Behavior, Because They Wanted To, and Don't Cry, and of the novels The Mare, Veronica, and Two Girls, Fat and Thin.


New York, New York

Date of Birth:

November 11, 1954

Place of Birth:

Lexington, Kentucky


B.A., University of Michigan, 1980

Read an Excerpt

“I don’t want to say, ‘I don’t understand.’ That’s weak and whining,” I said. “And besides, I do understand.”
“What do you understand?” she asked.
I answered calmly. “That this is the end of men like me. That they are angry at what’s happening in the country and in the government. They can’t strike at the king, so they go for the jester. They may not win now, but eventually they will. And who am I to stand in the way? I don’t want to stand in the way.”

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