From the Booker-shortlisted author, a wild ride of an essay collection about living fast and free in a crowded world, with all the brilliance of THE FLAMETHROWERS and THE MARS ROOM From the Booker-shortlisted author of The Mars Room, a career-spanning collection of spectacular essays about politics and culture. Rachel Kushner is a writer celebrated for her 'chops, ambition, and killer instinct' (John Powers, Fresh Air). In The Hard Crowd, she gathers a selection of her writing from over the course of the last twenty years that addresses the most pressing political, artistic, and cultural issues of our times - and illuminates the themes and real-life terrain that underpin her fiction. In nineteen razor-sharp essays, The Hard Crowd spans literary journalism, memoir, cultural criticism, and writing about art and literature, including pieces on Jeff Koons, Denis Johnson, and Marguerite Duras. Kushner takes us on a journey through a Palestinian refugee camp, an illegal motorcycle race down the Baja Peninsula, 1970s wildcat strikes in Fiat factories, her love of classic cars, and her young life in the music scene of her hometown, San Francisco. The closing, eponymous essay is her manifesto on nostalgia, doom, and writing. These pieces, new and old, are electric, phosphorescently vivid, and wry, and they provide an opportunity to witness the evolution and range of one of the world's most dazzling and fearless writers.
Number of Pages: 272
Publication Date: 8 Apr 2021
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Dimensions (cm): 23.4(H) x 15.3(L) x 2(W)
Weight (gm): 334
ReviewsThe Hard Crowd is wild, wide-ranging and unsparingly intelligent throughout.
* Vogue *Best Books to Read in 2021* *One of America's most exciting writers
. . . A brilliant collection of art and literary criticism, reportage, and autobiography.
* Daily Telegraph *She writes as well as any writer alive
about the pleasure of a good motor doing what it was designed to do . . . Cool and wise, with real power and control
. . . This book has a real gallery of souls
. . . As strong a statement about artistic purpose and sensibility as I've read in a while.
-- Dwight Garner * New York Times *She seems to work with a muse and a nail gun, so surprisingly yet forcefully do her sentences pin reality to the page.
-- Kathryn Schulz * New York Magazine *I honestly don't know how she is able to know so much
(about motorcycle racing, Italian radical politics) and convey all of it in such a completely entertaining and mesmerizing
way. -- George SaundersKushner at her most freewheeling
. . . Luminously beautiful
. . . 'The Hard Crowd', which closes the book, allows us to see how Kushner has evolved over the twenty-year span of this collection.
-- Michael LaPointe * Times Literary Supplement *New Journalism given a new lease of life
. . . And then there's the frank pleasure of her sentences
. . . I'm glad to taste something this sharp, this smart.
-- Olivia Laing * Observer *She's going to be one we turn to for our serious pleasures and for the insight and wisdom we'll be needing in hard times to come.
-- Robert StoneIf you want to ride in a famous motorcycle race, then hang out with Keith Richards in 1990s San Francisco and finally consider the work of Marguerite Duras - and who wouldn't? - all you have to do is pick up this wide-ranging book of journalism.
-- Bethanne Patrick * Washington Post *Rachel Kushner's dauntless essays
] all propelled by a singular and ferocious curiosity.
-- Cornelia Channing * Vulture *
Rachel Kushner is the author of The Mars Room, which was shortlisted for the 2018 Man Booker Prize. Her previous novels, Telex from Cuba and The Flamethrowers, were both New York Times bestsellers and finalists for the National Book Award. Her fiction has appeared in the New Yorker, Harper's and the Paris Review. She lives in Los Angeles.