Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Rapture” as Want to Read:
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview


2.95  ·  Rating Details  ·  611 Ratings  ·  100 Reviews
The setting is a New York apartment where two long-estranged lovers try to resuscitate their passion. Kay is old enough to be skeptical about men–this man in particular–but still alert to the possibility of true love. Benjamin is a filmmaker with an appealing waywardness and a conveniently disappearing fiancée. As the two lie entwined in bed, Susan Minot ushers readers acr ...more
Kindle Edition, 128 pages
Published (first published January 1st 2002)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Rapture, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Rapture

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,109)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
mark monday
she blows, and her thoughts never wander far from misguided contemplation of her object of affection. he gets blown, and his thoughts capture the various rationalizations of a self-absorbed, self-important cad. should blow jobs really be this tortuous? this short novel never really gets beyond its central conceit, and the basic lameness of the Longest Blowjob Story Ever becomes increasingly, depressingly apparent.

this could have been good. the complicated feelings involved in post-break-up sex i
Feb 25, 2010 W.B. rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Lovers of airbrushed novels you buy at the 7-11
Recommended to W.B. by: Satan apparently
I tried. I really did. I tried for thirty-seven pages (the book is only 115 pages long) but I decided to throw in the kaafiyeh. I figured I'd go buy some birdseed and feed the sparrows out back or something, as sort of an expiatory gesture for having wasted as much time as I did reading this far in a clueless novel. I don't know why I picked this book up. Maybe because I believed the author would have something to say about rapture, which is an interesting psychological state. Maybe because her ...more
Longest. Blow job. Ever.

There were some lovely bits in this tale of two lovers coming together for what is likely the last time, and the complete disconnection of their thoughts as Kay fellates Benjamin. For 116 pages. I just kept thinking, "Is it over yet?" Not a good sign for such a short book.

And yet, so much of what Kay was thinking could have been culled from my own soul that I cried profusely while reading. Minot gets points for that, for capturing the aching need inside of some women to
A blowjob. The entire story takes place during the course of a blowjob. Two ex-lovers reunite for lunch- and she ends up going down on him in the bedroom. Minot alternates between the inner dialogue of each person (the sucked and the suckee) and we see how disconnected they are from each other even though they're connected by this most intimate physical act. Is this just another example of how nonchalant and irrelevant the blow job has become? Is the modern equivalent of kissing really now oral ...more
Jackie Kinealy
Jun 16, 2014 Jackie Kinealy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a small, slim book that you can (and should) read in an afternoon. The entire plot takes place during a very long and tiring act of fellatio between two people, while each character has flashbacks to past moments in their relationship. The two, Kay and Benjamin, are back in bed together one afternoon after several months of no contact with each other. They first slept together while working on a movie in Mexico, but Benjamin was engaged to another woman who he had been dating for 11 year ...more
Feb 08, 2014 Lupe rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I've read Minot's collection of short stories, Lust; her novel, Evening; and now this. This was definitely the most difficult to get through. I think Minot's strongest writing lies in her short stories. Nothing was driving the plot except the most drawn out blow job of all time, save for a few intermittent rests when Kay got tired. No kidding about not sympathizing with the characters. I hated Benjamin, although sometimes I saw glimpses of myself in Kay. Overall I wouldn't recommend this book. M ...more
It seems most reviewers were only able to focus on one aspect of this book and then, to either dismiss the sanctity of the act and view it as an immature, horny 15 year old would or to become enraged and then analyze only that portion of the book rather than the story in it's entirety. Shame, they really missed out.

Think about meet someone and they become the highlight of your day, their love is now a marker of what came before and what followed after. You adore them, worship them in yo
Dec 14, 2014 Cai rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
RAPTURE is a short novel that tells the story of a relationship, narrated alternately by the male and female characters. What is unusual here is that while the back story covers several years, the front story unfolds over the unspecified time it takes for her to give him a blow job. Minot is truly skilled in writing about sex and getting at male/female attitude differences. But the conceit here didn’t hold up for an entire novel. In many ways this felt to me like a long short story.
I know a book this small is meant to be read in one sitting, with a cup of tea or something. I read it on breaks at work, and ended up not reading it for a week or more as work got too busy for me to take breaks.

I found this book very well observed. A lot of the emotions described felt familiar. The language in some spots was quite lovely as well. For these two reasons, I gave the book three stars.

Yet I did not care. Whenever I was reading this book, I could not stop feeling that these two chara
Oct 18, 2009 Taylor rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Listen, I really like the other Susan Minot books I've read--in fact, Evening is one of my favorites of all time--but this one blows, not to put too fine a point on it. I mean, it's composed entirely of the reminiscences two boring and selfish people have while the woman is giving the man a blowie for old time's sake. (For the record: how long can you suck a dick before you get lockjaw? Probably not as long as it took to read this turd.) I'm being crass because this book doesn't deserve better. ...more
May 26, 2015 Emma rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Susan Minot writes mostly attractive, thoughtful prose but it is wasted on this story of two deeply unsympathetic people engaged in a final sex act in their sporadic relationship. Benjamin is one of life's anti-heroes; a mooch and adulterer who is unable to empathise or to grow emotionally beyond his student years. Kay is frankly pathetic, throwing herself into her own debasement at the hands - and not only the hands - of this feckless man, seemingly to fuel an obsession with the male organ that ...more
Dec 08, 2014 Zoe rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: unfinished-books
UNFINISHED. Read until pg 71. UTTER SHIT. complete and uttter shit. how could a woman write this? It's an abomination. While the woman worships his fucking dick off he's off dreaming about boring boring memories and his ex fiance and she starts dreaming about memories too but worshipping him still. If I could erase the 71 pages from my memory I would. It's full of bullshit like him saying "tell a woman she's beautiful it will make her feel better everytime, no matter what." choosing between his ...more
Jan 26, 2014 Laurie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
p 20 It was not the all-consuming feeling which comes when you arrive at a place you've known well, after being away a long time, so that some things are changed, giving you a new thrill, and since you see it with new eyes, it is both old AND new, both familiar and strange.

p 36 It was one thing to touch a person for the first time. It was one of the headier things in life. But to touch a person one has known, after a long time has passed, that was even headier. And if that person was never actua
Apr 22, 2016 Sarah rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Although this is well-written, and it was probably a good creative writing exercise that taught Susan Minot a lot about her craft, mostly this is just really depressing. It's a novella, so it's not like it'd take much of your life, but let me save you some grief and quote the very last bit. Here's what this is:

"It was fucking sad. He wondered if Kay had any idea how fucking sad this was, or how wretched he felt, or how polluted he was, or really how bad. He'd been sliding along in the shadows fo
Natasha Connally
Jul 09, 2014 Natasha Connally is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: can-t-do-it
This book is just awful... It's horribly written with little to no feel for the characters true identities or an actual plot. I couldn't force myself to slug through all the crap to finish it.
Apr 10, 2016 Jenny rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
While Minot eventually makes it clear why she chose "Rapture" as the title, I'd still have called it "Feckless" or "Weakness" or "Foibles." Kay tries to recapture the early magic of her long-expired relationship, like an addict always trying to rediscover that first perfect high. Benjamin bumbles his way through both the relationship and its aftermath, losing steam as he repeatedly fails. The story is an old one, so the beauty of the book is in how it's told. I can see readers getting impatient ...more
Aug 28, 2015 Tonya rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lovers reunited; during sex, she's thinking how much he now means to her; he's now thinking how much she once meant to him. They're at odds mentally, still. Benjamin, the "he", is a true asshole though, no question.

I love Minot's imagery, ability to connect memories to current moments, and her analogies. It's almost like a book of psychology. As she weaves us back and forth between their present engagement and thoughts of their pasts, I continued to wonder how they were going to wound up at the
Jacquie Maynard
Longest blow job ever. And just like the ending of the blow job, the ending of this mini novel was wholly unsatisfying. It was hard to like any of the characters and I found myself itching to finish the book just so that I could read something else. This book had been sitting on my shelf for a while, so I felt an obligation to finish it. I'm glad that I did, so that I can now forget about it completely. The prose itself wasn't BAD, per se, and I liked the idea of an entire novel spanning only an ...more
Claudia Vaughn
Dec 19, 2007 Claudia Vaughn rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Like the last Seinfeld episode, a pretty good idea but imperfectly exectuted.
May 01, 2012 Laura rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The longest blow job of all time
Nov 01, 2009 ØrionSof2014 rated it it was ok
This book I thought was very boring. This book is about a guy named Ben and a girl named Kay who have problems with each other. The girl is having problems with this other girl named Venessa. Venessa was Ben's ex girlfriend and Kay is having problems because she thinks that Ben still likes Venessa. Ben is having problems with Kay because he thinks she doesn't like him and also because he liked Vanessa more than Kay. Vanessa and Kay are very different. Kay is a one of those people who are neat a ...more
Feb 16, 2011 Lori rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
“Rapture,” by Susan Minot, is a short novella about the complications of love, relationships, and sex. The line, “He lay back like the ambushed dead, arms flung down at his sides, legs splayed out and feet sticking up, naked” is the first line of the novella and it sets a defeated tone for the characters it is objectifying: Benjamin and Kay. Benjamin is not dead; although he may have been ambushed by Kay. It also brings war to mind: The war of the sexes and the war that is sex. When I imagine ho ...more
David Gillis
Feb 15, 2011 David Gillis rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Rapture" is a short story by Susan Minot that tells the tale of two lovers, Kay and Benjamin, and how they come to terms with where they stand in the present. The most development in the story is told through the past events shared between the two. Benjamin, a director that's having a tough time getting off the ground, struggles to figure out what it means to love. He also utilizes women for his own pleasure, with only Kay (the other protagonist) and his ex-fiancé, Vanessa, having any true meri ...more
Courtney Michaud
Feb 16, 2011 Courtney Michaud rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
When first picking up and skimming through Susan Minot’s Rapture, I already had a preconceived notion that it was going to be great, because I had already read her short stories. This is nothing in comparison. Certain things I liked about this piece, but mostly I found this piece to be very self-indulgent and very hard to keep up with. I was, in all actuality, pretty disappointed. If you’re picking this up to read as a romance novella, don’t bother. Don’t be fooled by the measly one hundred and ...more
Megan Gradolfer
Minot, Susan. “Rapture,”
New York: Knopf, 2002

“Rapture” by Susan Minot introduces two past lovers that have met up for what seems to be the final time in their twisted “relationship.” It begins with the two engaging in sexual activity, but the majority of the story is reflection. The tale recounts the numerous times these two, Kay Bailey and Benjamin Young, had lost themselves within passions of lust for each other, despite any commitments they were in. While Kay and Benjamin both admit at some p
Feb 17, 2011 Kevin rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Susan Minot’s novella Rapture opens on a graphic act of oral sex during a reconciliation between troubled lovers. Benjamin is a filmmaker, good-looking and masculine. Kay is a production manager, headstrong and personable. Both man and woman meet during a film shoot in Mexico, which serves as the catalyst for lust. However, Benjamin has a fiancé – the beautiful and successful Vanessa, who he claims to love but is “not in love with”. His meeting with Kay only manages to spark an immediate infatua ...more
Keytrice Castro
In 2002, Susan Minot’s Rapture was published out of New York—her fifth book and quite possibly her most straight-forward yet complex novel written. Straight-forward in that the entire novel is written around one act of fellatio, and complex in that it delves into the minds of both participants, revealing the harsh differences between the minds of men and women. The novel opens with a small description of the setting that spans the entire story: a man with “arms flung down at his sides, legs spla ...more
Cyndy Aleo
May 20, 2011 Cyndy Aleo rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I'm a sucker for a sales table at a bookstore, and am always willing to take a chance on a book by an author who has already had rave reviews for a previous book. I should, however, learn to pass by the books where all the comments on the jacket are for the previous book, and not the one I'm picking up, so that I can miss such duds as Susan Minot's Rapture.

::: Benjamin and Kay :::

Rapture actually takes place in a single afternoon; two ex-lovers, Benjamin and Kay, have met for lunch and end up in
Janeika Sweet
Susan Minot’s book titled Rapture is the story of a man named Benjamin and a woman named Kay who had an affair. The story takes place over the course of a blowjob. Ben was engaged to Vanessa, but falls out of love with her; after being with her for 11 years, he meets Kay while doing a job in Mexico. They fall for each other. After months of no involvement, they meet for lunch and Kay gives Ben a blowjob. Flashbacks throughout the text provide the backstory in which we hear Kay and Ben’s side of ...more
Oct 12, 2010 Lacey rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Minot, Susan
Vintage Books, A Division of Random House, Inc. 2003

Love is often full of misunderstandings. It can be misleading, confusing, and even heartbreaking. But above all, love is a lifetime experience that renders the body to feel and do things the mind cannot comprehend.

Susan Minot’s contemporary novel, Rapture, is the story of two people, Kay and Benjamin, and their journey for love through sex. Minot cleverly weaves her characters together in a series of rapid flashbacks dur
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 36 37 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Someday This Will Be Funny
  • Riverside Blues
  • A Book of Women Poets: From Antiquity to Now
  • Simple Passion
  • The Love Songs of Sappho
  • Bitterroot Landing
  • Centuries of June
  • The Ordering of Love: The New and Collected Poems of Madeleine L'Engle
  • Love Songs
  • A Thing (or Two) About Curtis and Camilla
  • Too Far
  • True Story
  • The Poetry and Short Stories of Dorothy Parker (Modern Library)
  • Anecdotes of Destiny and Ehrengard
  • Kings of Infinite Space
  • Stepmonster: A New Look at Why Real Stepmothers Think, Feel, and Act the Way We Do
  • The Fundamentals of Play: A Novel
  • There Once Lived a Girl Who Seduced Her Sister's Husband, and He Hanged Himself: Love Stories
Susan Minot is an award-winning novelist and short story writer whose books include Monkeys, Folly, Lust & Other Stories, and Evening, which was adapted into the feature film of the same name starring Meryl Streep. Minot was born in Boston and raised in Manchester-by-the-Sea, Massachusetts, attended Brown University, and received her MFA in creative writing from Columbia University. She curren ...more
More about Susan Minot...

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »

“Boy poison - a boy's kisses were like a poison, which infected you and after you were exposed you craved more, like an addict.” 19 likes
“Unless you were high up in a building or happened to glimpse it at the end of one of the big avenues going east-west, all you knew of the sunset was a darkening in the air. No wonder people in New York were so unbalanced. They were totally untouched by the rhythms of nature. You were only aware of nature when something extreme happened, like a snowstorm or heatwave.” 1 likes
More quotes…