Toby Press, 2009
A breathtaking collection of monologues, it's difficult to put down once you start A Leap. Starting it on my morning commute had me wishing I had called in sick to finish it.
The monologues start 100 years ago with the wife of a famous artist reflecting on the life she has chosen and what the other choices might have been. When faced with another choice, she does something surprising. They end with a contemporary woman. Between are the voices of several men and women throughout the 20th century, experiencing both public and private horrors: love, loss, WWII. Each monologue has a distinct point of view and voice, different from the last, even though two have similar settings and subject matter.
Anna Enquist is apparently a well-loved Dutch writer, and interestingly, she is also a psychoanalyst. This must be why the stories are so vivid and the inner lives of the characters are really well-developed. I'm kind of jaded about new books, having read a lot of crap, so it's really exciting to me to have been sent this book and to discover this author.