Miriam Krule recommends The Life and Death of Sophie Stark, by Anna NorthRead about another book on the list.
Anna North’s provocative second novel has been hailed as a book about “genius,” but for me it was more about the basics: the craft of telling a good story. And Sophie Stark is a great story, it’s just not about Sophie. Its chapters are alternatingly told from the perspectives of the people who knew and admired her, and with each one we get a better picture of the ways in which people knowingly and unknowingly influence the people they love. The book opens at a Moth-like storytelling event with a tale from Sophie’s soon-to-be girlfriend; stories are told and retold, and with each telling new insight is unraveled. With each new chapter we get another bit of Sophie’s life, but what we’re really getting are the bits of the lives she’s influenced—all masterfully crafted by North.
The Page 69 Test: The Life and Death of Sophie Stark.