Sweet Days of Discipline (Paperback)
On the heels of I Am the Brother of XX and These Possible Lives, here is Jaeggy's fabulously witchy first book in English, with a new Peter Mendelsund cover
A novel about obsessive love and madness set in postwar Switzerland, Fleur Jaeggy’s eerily beautiful novel begins innocently enough: “At fourteen I was a boarder in a school in the Appenzell.” But there is nothing innocent here. With the off-handed remorselessness of a young Eve, the narrator describes her potentially lethal designs to win the affections of Fréderique, the apparently perfect new girl. In Tim Parks’ consummate translation (with its “spare, haunting quality of a prose poem,” TLS), Sweet Days of Discipline is a peerless, terrifying, and gorgeous work.
About the Author
Fleur Jaeggy— “a wonderful, brilliant, savage writer” (Susan Sontag) —was born in 1940 in Zurich and lives in Milan. Her work has been acclaimed as “small-scale, intense, and impeccably focused ”(The New Yorker) and “addictive” (Kirkus).
Tim Parks is the author of more than twenty novels and works of nonfiction, including the best-selling Italian Neighbors and An Italian Education. His novels include Europa which was shortlisted for the Booker Prize. His essays have appeared in the The New Yorker and the New York Review of Books. Parks is also a renowned translator from the Italian and lives in Verona.
Clocking in at a sharp 101 pages, you’re finished before you can lodge a complaint, its contents going down as smoothly as a martini served in an ice-cold glass.
— Kaitlin Phillips
Violence dredged from the depths of consciousness is the most darkly glittering seam running through this world. Exhilarating.
— Laura McLean-Ferris
Jaeggy’s astute compression of narrative detail is at once serene and startling. Beneath a placid, opalescent surface lurks a threat of violence that may or may not be realized, but which contributes to the profound impression that people and their lives are unpredictable, coursing with icy, barren wildness.
— Emily LaBarge
Reading Jaeggy is not unlike diving naked and headlong into a bramble of black rosebushes, so intrigued you are by their beauty: it’s a swift, prickly undertaking, and you emerge the other end bloodied all over.
— Daniel Johnson
Jaeggy seems to have crushed a glass in her palm and tweezed out a few shards for the page. Her prose is indeed extraordinary…it is also frightening.
Dipped in the blue ink of adolescence, Fleur Jaeggy’s pen is an engraver’s needle depicting roots, twigs, and branches of the tree of madness: Extraordinary prose. Reading time is approximately four hours. Remembering time, as for its author: the rest of one’s life.
— Joseph Brodsky