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Her 37th Year, An Index
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Her 37th Year, An Index

3.99  ·  Rating details ·  156 ratings  ·  24 reviews
Fiction. Women's Studies. HER 37TH YEAR, AN INDEX is the story of a year in one woman's life. Structured as an index, the work is a collage of excerpted conversations, letters, quotations, moments, and dreams. An exploration of longing and desire, the story follows a moment of crisis in a marriage and in the life of a woman who remains haunted by an unassimilable past. All ...more
Paperback, 168 pages
Published March 15th 2015 by Noemi
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Jun 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I feel like Suzanne Scanlon writes just for me. I could not wait to read this after reading Promising Young Women and it was super magic. Full of thought-provoking, brave and emotional snippets from a woman's life, she really gets inside you. ...more
Apr 09, 2015 rated it really liked it
My review which appeared in the Chicago Tribune:

On the final two pages of her lyrical and slim — but far from slight — semi-autobiographical novella, "Her 37th Year, An Index," Suzanne Scanlon acknowledges no fewer than 48 "other writers and texts I've copied, (mis)quoted, reformulated, or otherwise invoked in the creation of this book." This list ranges from Virginia Woolf's "Mrs. Dalloway" to Claudia Rankine's "Don't Let Me Be Lonely," from Hélène Cixous' "Three Steps on the Ladder of Writing
Nov 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
Imagine if High Fidelity had actually told Rob's story through his autobiographical record collection. That's sort of like what's going on in this book. Sort of. ...more
Jul 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, reviews
As soon as I finished I started all over again. Her 37th Year is not written in a standard format, which might normally be a cause for concern. I despise gimmicks in literature. They have a tendency to be contrived and silly, ridiculous where they are meant to convey depth of feeling. However, Suzanne Scanlon's book feels more Barthes-esque, in the best possible way. Instead of a chronological narrative the reader is presented with bite-sized insights into a woman's life. But don't make the mist ...more
Aug 31, 2015 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Melissa by: Anne Marie
"And now, how will I fit into my bourgeois life?"

Reminiscent of Maggie Nelson, of Jenny Offill, at first I wearied of the style, all the pieces and bits, anecdotes, but eventually it didn't matter because this book so moved me. The idea of loneliness within one's own family, of making sense of how women's perception of self is fraught, of motherhood, teaching, teachers, lovers. Many great lines, wisdom and recognition.

"In my New York (of the nineties) I walked freely, broke, sad, tired. Now if y
Delia Rainey
May 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
i can't believe i picked up this little book. all the books i've been reading and obsessing over all started to speak to each other. for one thing, i've just finished 'in memoriam to identity' by kathy acker, 'video green' and re-read 'i love dick' by chris kraus, and 'couer de lion' by ariana reines, and 'don't let me be lonely' by claudia rankine. i wonder if anyone will ever make a big diagram, or map, or neighborhood, where all these books live, and talk to each other, desperately. like litt ...more
May 25, 2018 rated it did not like it
Shelves: memoir-biography
The premise for this book sounded appealing to me. Alas, this woman's 37th year is not worthy of being the subject of a book. She comes across as having no sense of her own self. She quotes authors, talks about attaching herself to men who could "tell me what to do and what not to do", and moans about wanting more out of life.

I hope she finds a way to cultivate internal validation and stop being dependent on external validation. I hope she has some adult development. However, based on this book
Dec 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
How to account for lives lived in search and want for nothing, that is everything, which cannot be had. This is the central concern of this melancholic and wry catalogue ("an index") of questions, notations, digressions, letters, memories, and moments. Like the work of Edouard Leve, here Scanlon uses language to explore negative space, the things that cannot be put to the page the things that cannot be subjected to language, and yet tragically--and thus beautifully--we try. She explores how all ...more
May 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Her 37th Year (see also: Leaving, Teaching, and Love), as when she reads this index in her 38th year, on airplanes, in hotel rooms, in the sunlight of her empty home, personal belongings boxed away. She dogears pages and copies quotes into her notebook, asks the library to loan her Desire and Reborn and Gravity and Grace, tells her students about The Artist is Present. Soon, she will no longer be present in this place. She has trouble telling her students why she is leaving, wishes she had Scanl ...more
May 20, 2016 added it
I went through this really quickly, but definitely need to read it more times. I think it's one of those books whose allure attracts you yet isn't really a book you should/need/want to read at that moment. ...more
Jul 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015
I enjoyed reading this book-- short enough to read in one or two sittings but too much going on to plow through it too quickly. I finished feeling literarily inadequate but with a good reading list for correcting that.
Jul 02, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2015-books
This book had an unusual structure which intrigued me, but ultimately, it was not my cup of tea. The character's mental illness shown through and it was stressful reading at times. Some of the writing was memorable, but I was probably not the intended audience for this book. ...more
Jacob Wren
Nov 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Such a beautiful book.
Aug 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I finished this book, and then I started it over again. Wow.
Tom Buchanan
Feb 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Apr 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: feminism
Powerful writing.
Ruth Marner
Nov 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
I like this book a lot. Anyone expecting a linear plot line will not like it, but I enjoyed it. I read it after reading Scanlon's first book. She likes to establish a narrative through fragmented pieces of memory, which, if we're being honest, is how many of us recall life. Using the alphabet as her central organizing structure, she goes through parts of her life. I would recommend reading her first book before reading this one, if possible. The impressions they give create a poetic template of ...more
Apr 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
This postmodern novella in the form of an index provides a lot of food for thought. As a writer and teacher, Scanlon's experience resonates with me, and the multiple references to other authors and works open up a suggested reading list. ...more
Lina Palm
Apr 01, 2018 rated it liked it
Insiktsfullt, slagkraftigt, humoristiskt. Jag gillar greppet med att dela upp händelserna som i en ordbok med förklaringar.
Amanda Dee
Aug 19, 2018 rated it liked it
desire, lack, love, (in)sanity, maternity(fear), literature, art. a repository of a woman’s life. pick it up, follow it, wherever it takes you.
May 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I've certainly not wanted books to end before. But this is the first time I wanted to keep reading a book--just a little bit at a time--forever.

The index format made it very easy to pick up and put down, but it was far from mindless. I reread each entry multiple times, and I can imagine revisiting it regularly to mine its philosophies and allusions.

Not a book to be tucked away on a shelf, this one is staying out on display in the coffee table tradition--but in my bedroom, a more private, medita
Oct 23, 2015 rated it it was ok
I'm much closer to two times 37 than I am to 37. Perhaps that is why I didn't relate or really understand this book.
It's written as if it is a small dictionary. Different. I usually like different but this did not grab me.
Dec 18, 2016 added it
Shelves: requested
I cannot pretend to have understood this, really, but I still enjoyed reading it.
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Dec 31, 2019
Cara Stone
rated it it was ok
Jul 14, 2015
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Jan 24, 2018
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Jan 24, 2018
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