'Pure genius, gliding lyricism ... It is, simply, a delight' Independent on Sunday
'Vivid with chlorine-bleached swimsuits, and post-match sorrow' Caitlin Moran, Observer, Books of the Year
As a teenager, Leanne Shapton trained for the Olympic swimming trials; now an artist, she is still drawn inexorably to swimming, in pools and the sea. What do you do with an all-absorbing activity once it is past its relevance, and yet you can't quite give it up? Swimming Studies is a lyrical, playful work that explores what it is like to move from a world of competition to one of recreation and introspection, giving a sideways glimpse into memory, adolescence, swimming, drawing, obsession and solitude.
'Exquisite ... brilliant, eccentric and moving - an immersion in life ... this enigmatic book is written out of what cannot be fathomed' Observer
'A rich account ... told with the originality and playfulness of an artist ... Shapton shares Dave Eggers' talent for taking the mundane and making it viscerally new' The Times
'Captures a bittersweet part of the writer's past as completely as a scent trapped in a bottle' John Jeremiah Sullivan, author of Pulphead
'If there is a more beautifully observed examination of the weightlessness, silence, rigour and delight of what it means to swim, I've never read it' David Rakoff, author of Half Empty