The Fatigue Artist is a refreshingly candid story about life, love, and survival in the contemporary world A writer living in New York City, Laura is overwhelmed by a mysterious lethargy and retreats to her bed where she reflects on the loves and losses of her recent past and seeks the cure to her perplexing tiredness Fortified by the Eastern teachings of her Tai Chi instructor and the nurturing attentions of friends and a acupuncturist, Laura crawls out of her somnambulism with intelligent determination in search of peace and resurrection The Fatigue Artist is both a moving chronicle of a woman s search for meaning and a wry depiction of modern urban life A great little love story Realistic, brutal at times The earth didn t move but it did tremor I learned a bit about tai chi that I never knew, and can appreciate that. I am reading this book in my first trimester of pregnancy At one point, a character compares chronic fatigue syndrome to my state There are a lot of similarities, and you can consider that as having made me biased towards the book its protagonist, although in which direction, I m not sure.My fundamental problem with this book is that it really never draws you into the story It s a narrative told entirely from the point of view of Laura, a writer with chronic fatigue syndrome, and follows he I am reading this book in my first trimester of pregnancy At one point, a character compares chronic fatigue syndrome to my state There are a lot of similarities, and you can consider that as having made me biased towards the book its protagonist, although in which direction, I m not sure.My fundamental problem with this book is that it really never draws you into the story It s a narrative told entirely from the point of view of Laura, a writer with chronic fatigue syndrome, and follows her life through the course of her several months illness During this time, she contemplates love, life, her work, everything in between, but the author of the novel fails to ever get Laura or us, the readers, out of Laura s head and into Laura s world Thus, it is a very plodding read The only passages that resonated with me were the ones about Q, her sometimes lost and sometimes not love and their relationship The entire novel could have focused there and been a muchcompelling story But instead, he is just thrown in every now and then in the cast of mostly entirely tedious characters that seem to wander through Laura s life and illness In fact, finding out what resolution, if any, she reaches with Q was my only reason besdies stubborness and being too ill to go find a book outside of arm s reach to finish reading the Fatigue Artist, and SPOILER absolutely nothing happens or is resolved In my opinion, the author just hasn t written a tight enough novel to leave her readers hanging like that without appearing, simply, to lazy or too short on ideas to finish what she started I love this book It was the book that introduced me to Lynne Sharon Schwartz When I discovered Fatigue Artist, I was in the throes of a severe semi disabling case of fibromyalgia The title sounded exactly as I was feeling, so I picked up the book I barely set it down until I had finished it With intelligence, humor, and self deprecating honesty, Schwartz perfectly captures what happens to a woman s life when her body seems to betray her and she begins to lose herself amidst the fatigue, the I love this book It was the book that introduced me to Lynne Sharon Schwartz When I discovered Fatigue Artist, I was in the throes of a severe semi disabling case of fibromyalgia The title sounded exactly as I was feeling, so I picked up the book I barely set it down until I had finished it With intelligence, humor, and self deprecating honesty, Schwartz perfectly captures what happens to a woman s life when her body seems to betray her and she begins to lose herself amidst the fatigue, the pains, and the malaise of chronic fatigue I recommend this book wholeheartedly to anyone who has been down for the count, whether for a few months, years, or chronically She helped me to feel alive when I could find little else to celebrate Now I m a dedicated Lynne Sharon Schwartz fan and always checkto see if and when she has a new book I buy her translations of foreign authors, her edited volumes, and her other nonfiction I came across her email address a few years ago and wrote her a fan letter I told her that, in my library, along with the shelves for Kerouac and the other Beats, my Iris Murdoch shelf and a half , I have a Lynne Sharon Schwartz shelf She was honored and told me she would do her best to add to it Our short correspondence helped me to understand how difficult it is to write I was pleased when her book about the virtues of not traveling, Not Now, Voyager, came out But I m still waiting for another novel Don t let anyone accuse of of malingering, the doctor said Little did he know how much I d like to malinger, but I can t seem to get the hang of it I keep shuffling to my desk to work on my book tinker with a phrase here and there, until my brain short circuits Lights out I sit holding the thin manuscript on my lap hoping it will grow from love alone p 112 As a novel, it s got some things to be desired No particular plot, for example, although there s a romantic subplot we Don t let anyone accuse of of malingering, the doctor said Little did he know how much I d like to malinger, but I can t seem to get the hang of it I keep shuffling to my desk to work on my book tinker with a phrase here and there, until my brain short circuits Lights out I sit holding the thin manuscript on my lap hoping it will grow from love alone p 112 As a novel, it s got some things to be desired No particular plot, for example, although there s a romantic subplot wending its way through the book It s not strong enough to be the plot But as a meditation on the effects of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome aka CFS, Myalgic Encephalomyelitis ME , and Chronic Fatigue Immune Dysfunction Syndrome CFIDS , it s got much to recommend it The author has the disease pegged, and has created a character who, not particularly needing to work, deals with the effect on the disease on that fact that she wants to, and can t The title comes from the narrator s reflections on performance art Ultimately, says the narrator, my ailment no longer interests me It s tolerable only as I keep finding metaphors and stories to wrap it in p 291 Yes When one is ill for years, it becomes just a fact of life, not the center of it Except when it leaps up and grabs center stage again, and then it s boring unless one can find some new way to see it.I don t know if I exactly recommend this book But I m glad I read it