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Fatigue Artist

3.53  ·  Rating Details ·  116 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews
The Fatigue Artist is a refreshingly candid story about life, love, and survival in the contemporary world. A writer living in New York City, Laura is overwhelmed by a mysterious lethargy and retreats to her bed where she reflects on the loves and losses of her recent past and seeks the cure to her perplexing tiredness.

Fortified by the Eastern teachings of her Tai Chi in

Paperback, 320 pages
Published July 25th 1996 by Scribner (first published June 1st 1995)
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Nov 04, 2007 Eva rated it liked it
I am reading this book in my first trimester of pregnancy. At one point, a character compares chronic fatigue syndrome to my state. There are a lot of similarities, and you can consider that as having made me biased towards the book & its protagonist, although in which direction, I'm not sure.

My fundamental problem with this book is that it really never draws you into the story. It's a narrative told entirely from the point of view of Laura, a writer with chronic fatigue syndrome, and follow
"Don't let anyone accuse of of malingering, [the doctor:] said.
"Little did he know how much I'd like to malinger, but I can't seem to get the hang of it. I keep shuffling to my desk to work on my book. ... tinker with a phrase here and there, until my brain short-circuits. Lights out. I sit holding the thin manuscript on my lap ... hoping it will grow from love alone." (p. 112)

As a novel, it's got some things to be desired. No particular plot, for example, although there's a romantic subplot we
Christine Cody
Jul 28, 2012 Christine Cody rated it it was amazing
I love this book. It was the book that introduced me to Lynne Sharon Schwartz. When I discovered Fatigue Artist, I was in the throes of a severe semi-disabling case of fibromyalgia. The title sounded exactly as I was feeling, so I picked up the book. I barely set it down until I had finished it. With intelligence, humor, and self-deprecating honesty, Schwartz perfectly captures what happens to a woman's life when her body seems to betray her and she begins to lose herself amidst the fatigue, the ...more
Gail M
Jan 06, 2017 Gail M rated it liked it
This was an odd book, about a writer, writing a book, which in fact is this book, while wrestling with chronic fatigue. The interesting parts involved her tai chi teacher and a healer, the rest, an amalgam of her "notes" (recordings of conversations, etc., which she does in lieu of "writing") are sometimes intriguing, often tangential. Her dispiriting marriage and perplexing on-going affair might indeed inspire chronic fatigue, if there is an emotional element to the disease.
Mar 22, 2009 Louise rated it did not like it
Shelves: fiction
I can't even think of a comment to make other than "blah" and I didn't like this book at all.

From back cover:

"From the acclaimed author of Leaving Brooklyn and Disturbances in the Field comes a witty, sophisticated novel that confirms Lynne Sharon Schwartz as a major voice in American fiction.

At age forty, Laura is struggling with the violent death of her reporter husband as well as an obsessive on-again-off-again love affair with an elusive actor. Suddenly, she find herself incapacitated by a m
Feb 09, 2011 Jann rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Reading about Laura, a forty year old woman suffering from some type of depression or chronic fatigue, I forgot I was in a book and thought she was a friend telling me her story on the phone. The prose is that REAL.
Mar 13, 2009 Linda rated it really liked it
Gave me some useful insight into what Chronic Fatigue Syndrome must be like for some people.
Feb 17, 2015 Catherine marked it as to-read
I registered a book at!
Jan 02, 2017 Ruth rated it liked it
Nice bits about Manhattan and about Tai Chi
Jul 27, 2009 Tab rated it liked it
Jul 28, 2007 jo rated it it was amazing
Shelves: queer, blew-my-mind
i love this writer; this book was like a fresh pool of water in the dusty city on a mid-august sunday afternoon.
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Aug 12, 2009
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Lynne Sharon Schwartz (b. 1939) is a celebrated author of novels, poems, short fiction, and criticism. Schwartz began her career with a series of short stories before publishing her first novel, the National Book Award–nominated Rough Strife (1980). She went on to publish works of memoir, poetry, and translation. Her other novels have included the award-nominated Leaving Brooklyn (1989) and Distur ...more
More about Lynne Sharon Schwartz...

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“My head aches, my eyes burn, my arms and legs have given up, and my face in the mirror has a grayish cast. The bed, across the room, calls in its unmistakable lover's croon, Come to me, come, only I can make you truly happy, oh, how happy I'll make you, don't resist, remember how you moan with pleasure the instant we touch.....

Laura Acosta”
“Parables, yes. We here are to lead life with woe. Tasting bitter.

the Tai Chi instructor”
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