About the book
Alison and Veronica meet amid the nocturnal glamour of 1980s New York: one is a former modelling sensation, stumbling away from the wreck of her career, the other an eccentric middle-aged proofreader with a meticulous eye. Over the next twenty years their friendship will encompass narcissism and tenderness, exploitation and self-sacrifice, love and mortality. Moving seamlessly between the glamorous and gritty '80s, when beauty and style gave licence to excess, and the broken world of the decade's survivors twenty years later, Gaitskill casts a fierce yet compassionate eye on the two eras and their fixations. Veronica masterfully evokes the fragility and mystery of human relationships in a world where love is rife with frightening artificiality. Evocative, raw and entirely unique, Veronica was shortlisted for the prestigious 2005 National Book Award in the USA.
Both stripped-bare fragile and 'fuck you' tough.
Gaitskill is enormously gifted ... [Veronica] is a masterly examination of the relationship between surface and self, culture and fashion, time and memory.
This characteristically oblique glance at the US fashion modeling industry of the 1980s is written with all the psychological kick that distinguished Gaitskill's last collection of stories.
Gaitskill writes so radiantly about violent self-loathing that the very incongruousness of her language has shocking power.
Gaitskill deserves some sort of monument [for this] beautiful, devastating new novel...There are paragraphs like poems in Veronica that lure you back, over and over.