The Lonely City

Adventures in the Art of Being Alone

Olivia Laing

Loneliness, I began to realise, was a populated place: a city in itself. And when one inhabits a city, even a city as rigorously and logically constructed as Manhattan, one starts by getting lost
The Lonely City by Olivia Laing (Paperback ISBN 9781782111252) book cover

Available as Paperback, eBook

A dazzling investigation into loneliness, art and the modern city - ‘A fierce and essential work’ Helen Macdonald.

SHORTLISTED FOR THE 2016 GORDON BURN PRIZE

CHOSEN AS ‘BOOK OF THE YEAR’ BY
Observer
Guardian
Telegraph
Irish Times
New Statesman
Times Literary Supplement
Herald

When Olivia Laing moved to New York City in her mid-thirties, she found herself inhabiting loneliness on a daily basis. Increasingly fascinated by this most shameful of experiences, she began to explore the lonely city by way of art. Moving fluidly between the works and lives of some of the city’s most compelling artists, Laing conducts an electric, dazzling investigation into what it means to be alone, illuminating not only the causes of loneliness but also how it might be resisted and redeemed.


“Triumphant … a brave writer whose books open up fundamental questions about life and art”
telegraph

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“Wonderfully freewheeling … constantly surprising … inspired”
guardian

“Luminously wise and deeply compassionate … a fierce and essential work”
Helen Macdonald, Author Of H Is For Hawk

“Unusually brave … Sublime”
the Times

“A new kind of literature … Endlessly, compulsively fascinating”
new Statesman


Olivia Laing

Olivia Laing is a widely acclaimed writer and critic. Her work appears in numerous publications, including the Guardian, Observer, New Statesman, Frieze and New York Times. She’s a Yaddo and MacDowell Fellow and was 2014 Eccles Writer in Residence at the British Library. Her first book, To the River, was shortlisted for the Royal Society of Literature Ondaatje Prize and the Dolman Travel Book of the Year. The Trip to Echo Spring was shortlisted for the 2013 Costa Biography Award and the 2014 Gordon Burn Prize. The Lonely City has been shortlisted for the 2016 Gordon Burn Prize. She lives in Cambridge.