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A Marker to Measure Drift by Alexander Maksik
  

Sarah Broadhurst's view...

A beautifully written, heartbreaking look at survivor’s guilt and a mind and life unravelling. A very quiet story at first, Maksik slowly builds tension as you learn more and more about the horrors that Jacqueline has survived till you reach the chilling and brutal climax of full discovery. Sensitively written and full of hope at how we survive the very worst that can be suffered. Beautiful, lyrical and poignant.

If you like Alexander Maksik you might also like to read books by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Jhumpa Lahiri and Chris Cleave.

Who is Sarah Broadhurst

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Synopsis

A Marker to Measure Drift by Alexander Maksik

On a holiday island somewhere in the Aegean Sea, Jacqueline, a young Liberian woman, fends off starvation as she survives in the aftermath of unspeakable brutality. Having escaped the horrors of Charles Taylor's regime, she builds a home of sorts in a cave overlooking the ocean. During the day, she wanders the sunny beaches offering massages to tourists, one Euro for five minutes, all the while balancing her will to live with the crushing guilt of survival. This hypnotic, lyrical and extraordinary novel tells the story of a woman existing in the wake of experiences so horrifying that she prefers homeless numbness to the psychological confrontation she knows is inevitable. It's a novel about memory. About storytelling. About how we live with what we know. Alexander Maksik is a writer of exceptional gifts, able to deliver devastatingly powerful emotion through deceptively simple, lucid prose.

Reviews

A mesmerising novel about a woman pushed to the limits of human experience. Maksik combines James Salter's gift for seductive sentences with a real mastery of character and story. A beautiful, tender piece of literature which just happens to be a page-turner too

Jonathan Lee

A Marker to Measure Drift is a haunting, haunted novel. Things get stripped down to essentials - food, water, where to sleep for the night, a state of solitary desperation brought on by the most profound kind of loss. Every line of this excellent novel rings true as Maksik leads us toward the catastrophe at the story's core. This is one of those books that leaves you staring into space when you finish, dazed from the sheer power of what's been said

Ben Fountain, author of Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk

About the Author

Alexander Maksik

Alexander Maksik is the recipient of a Truman Capote fellowship and a Teaching/Writing fellowship from the Iowa Writers' Workshop. His work has been published in many literary magazines. This is his first novel.

Author photo © Martina Bacigalupo

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Book Info

Publication date

19th June 2014

Author

Alexander Maksik

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Author's Website

alexandermaksik.com/

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Publisher

John Murray Publishers Ltd an imprint of Hodder & Stoughton General Division

Format

Paperback
240 pages

Categories

Literary Fiction
eBook Favourites

Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)

ISBN

9781848548077

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