Come join us! Sign up to participate in an exclusive event with author Susan Choi and her book Trust Exercise, winner of the 2019 National Book Award for Fiction. We've partnered with Macmillan to bring this opportunity to book club members across the country, who can tune in to hear a discussion with author Hamilton Cain and participate in the live Q&A. Register through the link below.
"Mind-bending. . . . A Gen-X bildungsroman that speaks to young generations, a Russian nesting doll of unreliable narrators, and a slippery #MeToo puzzle-box about the fallibility of memory. . . . Trust Exercise a perfectly stitched together Frankenstein's monster of narrative introspection and ambiguity. . . . It flexes its own meta-existence--as a novel about the manipulation inherent in any kind of narrative--brilliantly." --New York Magazine
In a big American city in the early 1980s, students at a highly competitive performing arts high school struggle and thrive in a rarified bubble, ambitiously pursuing music, movement, Shakespeare, and, particularly, their acting classes. When within this striving "Brotherhood of the Arts," two freshmen, David and Sarah, fall headlong into love, their passion does not go unnoticed--or untoyed with--by anyone, especially not by their charismatic acting teacher, Mr. Kingsley. The outside world of family life and economic status, of academic pressure and of their future adult lives, fails to penetrate this school's walls--until it does, in a shocking spiral of events that catapults the action forward in time and flips the premise upside-down.
What the reader believes to have happened to David and Sarah and their friends is not entirely true--though it's not false, either. It takes until the book's stunning coda for the final piece of the puzzle to fall into place--revealing truths that will resonate long after the final sentence. As captivating and tender as it is surprising, Susan Choi's Trust Exercise will incite heated conversations about fiction and truth, and about friendships and loyalties, and will leave readers with wiser understandings of the true capacities of adolescents and of the powers and responsibilities of adults.