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Elizabeth Costello by J. M. Coetzee

In J. M. Coetzee's novel, Elizabeth Costello is a aging Australian writer, famous for a book she'd written years ago and now traveling the lecture circuit, although she's a poor public speaker. Through her speeches and interactions with her family members, Elizabeth Costello is more of a series of essays contained within a fictional outline. Coetzee examines themes such as animal rights, the Holocaust, humanism, rationalism, as well as how a writer imparts his beliefs through his fiction. Nominated for the Booker Prize, The Telegraph says of this novel, "In the end, as his heroine confronts death, he has been able to raise the deepest questions through some fictional safeguards -- without settling on answers, or defending all the arguments as his. But this is fine, because the attentive reader will have been badly jolted. It is why Coetzee is famous: Elizabeth Costello is no cheap shock. It is a serious one."
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Buy Elizabeth Costello by J. M. Coetzee
The Guardian review
by Hermione Lee

The Telegraph review
by Andrew Marr

The Observer review
by Adam Mars-Jones

The Telegraph review
by Caroline Moore

New York Times review
by Janet Maslin

New York Times review
by Judith Shulevitz

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
review by Diana Nelson Jones

Boston Globe review
by Siddhartha Deb

San Francisco Chronicle
review by Sarah Coleman

J. M. Coetzee
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