Cover image for Lucy
Kincaid, Jamaica.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Plume, 1991.

Physical Description:
163 pages ; 21 cm.
Format :


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X Adult Fiction Open Shelf

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Lucy, a teenage girl from the West Indies, comes to America to work as an au pair for a wealthy couple. She begins to notice cracks in their beautiful faade at the same time that the mysteries of own sexuality begin to unravel. Jamaica Kincaid has created a startling new heroine who is destined to win a place of honor in contemporary fiction.

Author Notes

Jamaica Kincaid came to the United States in 1966 as a free-lance writer and is now on staff at the New Yorker. Her first volume of stories, At the Bottom of the River (1983), depicts men and women alienated from each other by conflict, physical separation, or death. The story "My Mother" vividly describes the painful separation between mother and daughter; and the stories in Annie John (1985) clearly reveal that the world of the past cannot be recaptured. Kincaid's poetic use of language and everyday images allows the reader to experience ordinary events with a new and heightened sensitivity. Kincaid is a relatively new writer whose works are beginning to receive critical attention.

(Bowker Author Biography) Jamaica Kincaid, novelist, memoirist, & essayist, was born in St. John's, Antigua. Her books include At the Bottom of the River, Annie John, Lucy, The Autobiography of My Mother, and My Brother, all published by FSG. She lives with her family in Vermont.

(Publisher Provided)

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

Lucy, a teenager from the West Indies who has renounced her family and past, comes to America to work as an au pair and detachedly observes the deterioration of her employers' marriage. ``This is a slim book but Kincaid has crafted it with a spare elegance that has brilliance in its very simplicity,'' said PW. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

Like her Annie John ( LJ 4/1/85), Kincaid's new heroine travels the coming-of-age road. Lucy, a 19-year-old West Indi an, sheds her cloistered colonial upbringing by accepting a job as an au pair in New York--the perfect setting for satisfying her gluttonous appetite for both mental and sensual stimulation. The startling disintegration of her employers' marriage triggers flashbacks of home and family; the reflected details are unsettling. Lucy finds being born ``woman'' places her in a territory she wants to explore and at the same time escape. As she begins her exploration, cathartic tears blur the first pages of her diary. But Lucy plunges ahead, reassured by the discovery of an authentic self. Strong in style and substance, dazzling with its sharp-edged prose, this is a novel no one should miss. Literary Guild selection; previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 6/1/90.-- Bibi S. Thompson, ``Library Journal'' (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.