Allergic to group activities of any kind, all her life Serenata has run, swum, and cycled - on her lonesome. But now that she's hit 60, all that physical activity has destroyed her knees. As she contemplates surgery with dread, her previously sedentary husband Remington, recently and ignominiously redundant, chooses this precise moment to discover exercise.
Which should be good for his health, right? Yet as he joins the cult of fitness that seems increasingly to consume the whole of the Western world, her once-modest husband burgeons into an unbearable narcissist. Ignoring all his other obligations in the service of extreme sport, he engages a saucy, taunting personal trainer named Bambi, who treats his wife with contempt. When Remington announces his intention to compete in a legendarily gruelling triathlon, MettleMan, Serenata is sure he's going to end up injured or dead - but the stubbornness of an ageing man in Lycra is not to be underestimated.
The story of an obsession, of a marriage, of a betrayal: The Motion of the Body Through Space is Lionel Shriver at her hilarious, sharp-eyed, audacious best.
'Enjoyably abrasive... a compelling read... sardonic and elegant' Evening Standard
'Scabrously funny... few authors can be as entertainingly problematic as Shriver' Guardian
'With laugh-out-loud and sad moments, it's a pinpoint-sharp novel' Woman and Home
'Darkly funny... Shriver is so good at making wry observations about human behaviour and this is particularly witty on the dynamics between couples who have been together a long time' Good Housekeeping
'Shriver is an exuberant novelist, fertile in ideas, robust in argument and disdainful of economy... She writes bold and fearless comedy and delights in slaughtering the sacred cows of the stupid times we live in. Few novelists now raise a laugh. Shriver does so time and again' Allan Massie, The Scotsman
'A satire on fitness zealotry with a side serving of culture-war intrigue... diverting' Financial Times
'Mischievous Lionel Shriver takes aim at the narcissistic modern cult of exercise. When Serenata's usually sedentary husband, Remington, takes up exercise and engages an attractive personal trainer called Bambi, the couple's lives are turned upside down.' The Times Best Books for Summer 2020
Lionel Shriver's novels include Sunday Times bestsellers Big Brother and The Mandibles: A Family, 2029-2047, the New York Times bestseller The Post-Birthday World and The Orange Prize-winning international bestseller We Need to Talk About Kevin. Her journalism has appeared in the Guardian and the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal and many other publications. She lives in London and Brooklyn.