The Friend

Winner, National Book Awards 2018 for Fiction

ISBN 9780735219441
Riverhead Books / Penguin Random House
Sigrid Nunez

Sigrid Nunez is the author of the novels Salvation City, The Last of Her Kind, A Feather on the Breath of God, and For Rouenna, among others. She has been the recipient of several awards including a Whiting Award, the Rome Prize in Literature, and a Berlin Prize Fellowship. More about this author >

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When a woman unexpectedly loses her lifelong best friend and mentor, she finds herself burdened with the unwanted dog he has left behind. Her own battle against grief is intensified by the mute suffering of the dog, a huge Great Dane traumatized by the inexplicable disappearance of its master, and by the threat of eviction: dogs are prohibited in her apartment building.

While others worry that grief has made her a victim of magical thinking, the woman refuses to be separated from the dog except for brief periods of time. Isolated from the rest of the world, increasingly obsessed with the dog’s care, determined to read its mind and fathom its heart, she comes dangerously close to unraveling. But while troubles abound, rich and surprising rewards lie in store for both of them.


Author of The Friend Sigrid Nunez accepts the 2018 National Book Award for Fiction

Sigrid Nunez, Fiction Winner, reads "The Friend" at the 2018 National Book Awards Finalists Reading