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Lean into uncertainty with Trust Exercise, the Vox Book Club’s November pick

Susan Choi’s Trust Exercise is the Vox Book Club pick for November.

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Constance Grady is a senior correspondent on the Culture team for Vox, where since 2016 she has covered books, publishing, gender, celebrity analysis, and theater.

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Something monumental is going to happen in November, and as of this moment we have no idea what it is. There is a chance we won’t know for certain for several weeks.

So in the spirit of embracing and exploring our current state of deeply vexed uncertainty, the Vox Book Club is going to spend November reading Susan Choi’s wicked and vexing Trust Exercise.

Trust Exercise won the National Book Award in 2019, and it was one of my favorite books of that year. It starts off as a love story between two kids at a high-achieving performing arts high school. Then it spins off from there with a vicious act two twist that I won’t spoil for you, because the moment you realize exactly what you’re reading is such a kick that I wouldn’t dare do anything to jeopardize it.

What ensues is an extended meditation on trust: the trust between lovers, between student and teacher, between actor and director. But Trust Exercise also covers the trust that is implicit and unspoken in novels themselves, that lies between the author who writes the novel, the characters who enact the novel, and the readers who read the novel. It’s the perfect book to read as we try to make our way through this period of deep and profound uncertainty. And I have confidence that together, if we all try hard enough, we’ll be able to figure out what the hell is happening at the end.

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Here’s the full Vox Book Club schedule for November 2020

Friday, November 20: Discussion post on Trust Exercise

Monday, November 30: Virtual live event with author Susan Choi. Subscribe to the newsletter, and we’ll send you an RSVP link as soon as it’s available.