From the highly acclaimed author of The Missing Person and Babylon and Other Stories, a resonant novel of entwined lives and a woman with an unsettling ability to broach the innermost dynamics of the people around her.
When Grace, an exceedingly competent and devoted therapist in Montreal, stumbles across a man who has just failed to hang himself, her instinct to help kicks in immediately. Before long, however, she realizes that her feelings for this charismatic, extremely guarded stranger are far from straightforward. In the meantime, her troubled teenage patient, Annie, runs away from home and soon will reinvent herself in New York as an aspiring and ruthless actress, as unencumbered as humanly possible by any personal attachments. And Mitch, Grace’s ex-husband, who is a therapist as well, leaves the woman he’s desperately in love with to attend to a struggling native community in the bleak Arctic. We follow these four compelling, complex characters from Montreal and New York to Hollywood and Rwanda, each of them with a consciousness that is utterly distinct and urgently convincing. With razor-sharp emotional intelligence, Inside poignantly explores the many dangers as well as the imperative of making ourselves available to—and responsible for—those dearest to us.
About Alix Ohlin
Alix Ohlin is the author of The Missing Person, a novel; Babylon and Other Stories; and Signs and Wonders, a new collection. Her work has appeared in Best American Short Stories, Best New American Voices, and on public radio’s Selected Shorts. She lives in Easton, Pennsylvania, where she teaches at Lafayette College.
Book World: ‘Inside,’ by Alix Ohlin
The Washington Post Book Review – June 22, 2012 (Excerpt)
Alix Ohlin, who already has one promising novel and two short-story collections behind her, possesses an unsettling gift for the quotidian — the lulling, soothing quality of everyday life and speech — even as the most awful things occur. She writes about well-mannered, well-educated people, and surprisingly often, they choose the suicidal way out, a cosmic way of saying, “Excuse me, may I leave the room?”
There are four main characters in her new novel, “Inside”: Grace Tomlinson, a psychologist who has devoted her life to helping people; Mitch Tomlinson, her ex-husband and also a therapist, who takes Grace’s altruism to a national level and tries to save societies; John “Tug” Tugwell, who saw awful things when he was with a non-governmental organization; and Annie Hardwick, a much younger woman and client of Grace’s who wants to make it in the movies. Ohlin braids these lives together, although it must be said that Annie seems an uncomfortable addition, someone tacked on to balance out the comparatively mature — and glum — older folks. [Read the full article...]
Here if You Need Me - ‘Inside’ and ‘Signs and Wonders,’ by Alix Ohlin
The New York Times Book Review – August 17, 2012 (Excerpt)
There are two species of novelist: one writes as if the world is a known locale that requires dutiful reporting, the other as if the world has yet to be made. The former enjoys the complacency of the au courant and the lassitude of at-hand language, while the latter believes with Thoreau that “this world is but canvas to our imaginations,” that the only worthy assertion of imagination occurs by way of linguistic originality wed to intellect and emotional verity. You close “Don Quixote” and “Tristram Shandy,” “Middlemarch” and “Augie March,” and the cosmos takes on a coruscated import it rather lacked before, an “eternal and irrepressible freshness,” in Pound’s apt phrase. His definition of literature is among the best we have: “Language charged with meaning.” How charged was the last novel you read?
David Lodge has pointed out that “the title of a novel is part of the text,” a part with “considerable power” to presage what awaits. Alix Ohlin’s sophomore effort yawningly announces itself as “Inside,” a forgettable moniker that suggests everything and so means nothing. Arthur Miller’s original title for “Death of a Salesman” was “The Inside of His Head,” until he came to his senses: all of literature is about the inside of somebody’s head. But since Ohlin’s novel lies stiffened in a morgue of mentation — since it relishes the Harlequin mauling of women and men — the inside on promiscuous display here is the inside of her characters’ precious hearts. [Read the full article...]
We are the only country that makes guns, including military-style assault weapons, available to anyone who wants to buy them. This is not freedom. It is a tyranny of death and destruction — a tyranny of which the National Rifle Association is proud. The Washington Post
FrogenYozurt.com may generate ad income and accept advertising/ads and links. Paid entries are marked as “Paid Articles.” Entries describing a product (book reviews, etc.) may contain descriptions provided by the manufacturer or other sources (Amazon.Com, etc.).
All entries marked as "Satire" may refer to actual persons or events, however, the content is of a satirical nature based on the writers' personal views and should not be taken seriously. All other entries reflect personal opinions on various topics.
All content on this website has been posted under the impression that they do not infringe any copyrights. However, if this site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner, we believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. Should you suspect a copyright infringement or any other legal issues with posts on this website, please contact the editor through the contact form as indicated on the top navigation bar, and we will remove the post immediately. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.