In the Cut by Susanna Moore

In the Cut

By day, Frannie teaches her writing students about irony and language in all its nuance and unspoken meaning. By night, she compiles a secret dictionary of street slang. One night in the basement of a bar she walks in on an intimate moment between a man and a woman. The man's face is shadowed in the darkness, but she will forever remember the tattoo on the inside of his left wrist. When the first brutal murder rocks her neighborhood, Frannie is p...

Details In the Cut

TitleIn the Cut
Release DateDec 17th, 1998
GenreFiction, Mystery, Thriller, Crime, Mystery Thriller

Reviews In the Cut

  • Delee
    4.5So with the lamps all put out, the moon sunk, and a thin rain drumming on the roof a downpouring of immense darkness began.To the Lighthouse, Virginia WoolfAfter finishing IN THE CUT- I set it down and thought for a moment...Did that really happen? I picked it up again and re-read the final pages...Yes, yes, it really did. I should have known...there were many clues given- I felt like I had been punched in the gut, and that feeling lingered ov...
  • Linda Strong
    Frannie is a school teacher ... instructing students on how to write. She has a love of words and language. She's making notes in order to someday write a book ... right now she's concentrating on street slang.One evening she's in a local bar headed for the basement ladies room. She accidentally walks in on a man and a woman during an intimate moment. His face is in the shadows. but she remembers well the tattoo on his wrist. The woman is young, ...
  • Evan
    In the Cut was made into a movie just a scant few years ago by artsy feminist director Jane Campion, with Meg Ryan the all-American girl trying to pull the mid-life star comeback and the sexy image-changing turn (with Oscar-bait glum acting chops and the requisite nudity) in the role of the language scholar and teacher who succumbs to the pull of the seamy side of NYC. Shades of Looking for Mr. Goodbar, perhaps.The book, in a nutshell, is about a...
  • Michael
    An intelligent slim sly thriller in which you're never quite sure whether the characters are telling the truth. Also an interesting use of first-person narration, especially at the end, which I won't reveal, except that it left me saying: wow.
  • Lauren
    Well, that was certainly... about 180 pages.Moore's narrator is a creative writing instructor working for a program that specializes in talented, disadvantaged students; she's also writing a book on linguistics, specifically on slang, so she spends the novel collecting words. It suits her--she's acquisitive, curious. She wants access and understanding, but she's there to analyze and obsess, not judge.Despite her apparently sedate career, she wind...
  • Ken
    In The Cut was a quick read. It kept me turning the pages, wanting to know what would happen. The main character intrigued me at first. And that's about as close as I can get to praise for this book.If you can stomach gruesome, twisted violence and enjoy analyzing it on a symbolic or literary level, then you may appreciate this book more than I. I don't think this book had anywhere near enough to say, however, to justify its sickening level of br...
  • Roman Clodia
    One of the things that interests me about sex is that it is a conspiracy of improvised myths. Very effective in evoking forbidden or hidden wishes. I hadn't realised I had so many of them until I met Jimmy Malloy. A tight, taut, terrifying tale that shimmers with an oppressive sense of risk and danger as clever Frannie with her intellectual interests in language and her penchant for perilous, unsafe sex finds herself followed by various men while...
  • Blair
    Susanna Moore's In the Cut is a strange and lucid thriller, vividly atmospheric, feverish and oppressively sinister. Frannie is a linguist and teacher, divorced and living alone in New York; she teaches creative writing to disadvantaged but gifted students and is also compiling a dictionary of local slang, excerpts from which pepper the narrative. At the beginning of the story, she goes to a bar with a male student - an act she feels uncertain ab...
  • Trish
    I assume that in the film version of this, Meg Ryan doesn't get her nipple cut off.I read this out of curiosity, because the movie got generally poor reviews, and I wondered if the book was better.Plot summary: A single woman living in New York does many stupid things, and then dies.Really. That's it. I can't even begin to list all of the ways this book didn't make sense to me. Maybe there really are people who move through life in such a dreamli...
  • Vanessa
    I picked this book up out of sheer perversity. Since this is billed as an erotic thriller, I should probably elaborate. Come closer, won't you?So, the movie they made of this book. It has a good pedigree: interesting actors like Mark Ruffalo and Jennifer Jason Leigh star (also starring but not very interesting is Meg Ryan) and Jane Campion directs. It's terrible. It's ludicrous. It is compellingly watchable in its awfulness like a grittily render...
  • Elizabeth
    short novella about an isolated woman who becomes involved with a detective who she suspects is shady AF. this book is a lot. the title (view spoiler)[ slang for vagina (hide spoiler)] should have clued me in but it didn't. this is gruesome & mean but i think that is the point. there is so much misogyny in this story that i could write an essay about women's bodies & what Susanna Moore is saying about power & gender. also, the sex these character...
  • Alistair Cross
    I read this book in one sitting (just now, actually) so that must mean I liked it. It's strange though. That's not a bad thing, really, it just isn't quite like anything I've ever read before, and I can't quite figure out what to think of it yet.What impressed me most, probably, was the writer's ability to convey a protagonist who was searching for something without seeming to consciously realize that anything was even missing. Interesting, that....
  • Taylor
    Another great warm weather porch read. I read this in one day.I knew about Jane Campion's film adaptation before I knew In the Cut was a book - Meg Ryan playing the titular woman, involved in an affair with fine-ass Mark Ruffalo, as a detective/maybe serial killer. Luckily it had been awhile since I'd seen the film, because as it goes, the book is way better.Our protagonist, Frannie, is an english teacher obsessed with slang. She's smart, cool, c...
  • N
    When I first read In the Cut, I was swept up in its surface pleasures: the protagonist, Franny moves through seedy parts of New York City, but theres a dark wonder to every scene; the poetry posted on the subway forms the backdrop to her story, as if it were placed there especially for her. As a teacher and writer, she rolls words on her tongue, obsessing over etymology, even dividing words into good and bad. Its a wonderful world in which to imm...
  • Stacey
    I've never read erotic literature per se, but there are parts of this book that I imagine would fall into that category. Those parts, the sexually explicit but not pornographic details, were the best thing about this book. The suspense that Moore was trying to create and build up throughout was certainly vivid at times but fell short at others. I wanted to know more, feel more about the protagonist and her motivations. Since I didn't, I felt rath...
  • Anne
    I liked her voice. A lot. But I'm still trying to figure out how this story is different from all the crap that lets rip with a strong female character, who has a dark sense of humor/fantasy that can't quite fight loneliness, a wide circle of friends across all kinds of tracks, and Lucite heels. And ends up dead after using "bad judgement," aka too much (intellectual) curiosity. This one @ the hands of a particularly fetishised Puerto Rican cop. ...
  • Sabrina Robinson
    I liked the raw sex scenes. That pretty much was the whole appeal for me. Update- I just reread this and even the sex scenes weren't that good. I think the author was trying to hard to be artsy. In my reread I got the impression the author was trying to make the main character seem cerebral and deep but it just made for disjointed dialogue and forced interactions. I couldn't finish it the second time.
  • Elizabeth
    I am honestly baffled as to what I just read, but I, in some way, am totally in awe of it at the same time. I picked this book up from the thrift store (my sissy bought it for me!), and I had never heard of it, but something about it seemed familiar. I still don't totally know what seemed familiar about it because the story was brand new, I'd never heard of the author, nor had I seen the cover. But I'm glad I picked it up, because what a weird an...
  • Shalini
    A difficult book to review. It had a raw gritty feel with bold scenes and graphic words weaved in with the thoughts of the main character. Frannie, a teacher, came across a woman performing a sexual act on a man with his face in darkness and tattoo on the wrist in the bar. The woman was then found murdered, and a detective came to her flat for questioning. A short affair with the detective was followed by a few shocking revelations. My first book...
  • Jennifer
    Very strange book. Moore seems to hate her characters as much as Scott Smith hates his...she has no compassion for any of them and, as such, anything goes. The end is easily the most disturbing ending of any book I've ever read (Hollywood ditched the ending for the movie), sorta reminiscent of Blair Witch (in terms of making you say "holy crap, did that just happen?" vs supernatural). Not for the faint of heart.
  • J.M. Lawler
    Incredible. This is one of the most erotic books I've ever read. It is foremost a thriller, but for such a slim volume it delivers so much. It delves deep into vulnerability and irrationality, and the murky terrain between men and women. Moore's observation of the way people talk and react are spot on. Every sentence is perfect, nothing is wasted. Such intelligent, inspirational writing.
  • Jessica
    This is a sort of Looking For Mr. Goodbar-come-lately story about an ostensibly tough, sexually confident woman who likes to Sleep With Danger and becomes entangled with a sadistic murderer. Although atmospheric and sexually provocative, at heart this is really a damsel-in-distress-meets-serial-killer story that isn't particularly innovative or surprising.
  • Lisa Greer
    this book is amazing and one that many probably haven't read. I stumbled upon it in the library one day. It haunted me for days. Things aren't always as they seem in matters of love, sexuality, etc. The ending is haunting.
  • Vinessa
    Dark, disturbing, tight edgy writing. Have reread it at least four times. Great opening...tells the whole story without giving anything away...unexpected ending.
  • Latanya (Crafty Scribbles)
    Ugh. Neither erotic nor thrilling. Boring without any particular aim or plot.
  • switterbug (Betsey)
    The ethereal writing of Moore reminds me of a female James Salter--a purposeful detachment that conveys the protagonist's (Frannie's) detachment from her own life. Startling ironies hint at Frannie's personal tragedies--accumulated and melancholied--heaped in a corner of her heart and cresting to bleed out onto the pages. It is this prose that creates a vivid depth of feeling and a taut, fresh, exciting rigor of momentum. Frannie is a scholarly w...
  • Alienor
    Impressionistic skillful portrait of New York, but nothing much at stake. It's this special brand of writing, where external details are thrown your way but there is no insight to the character's actions, desires, reactions to life happening to them. They describe they're falling down, vomiting but do not say how they feel. You're left to infer it all and you watch small things unfold, not really knowing why or how or whether we should even care....
  • Heather *Undercover Goth Queen*
    I couldn't figure out if this was intentionally offensive. God, the racist terms, and this ethnic group does this, and that ethnic group does that. And I couldn't figure out if the feminist stuff here and there was actually feminist or just a load of crap.I liked the writing, at least.But I was nearing the end and I was frantic because there didn't seem to be enough pages to finish the story.And there weren't.
  • Adam
    I tore through this really quickly. It's probably not for everyone, but the combination of spare prose, precise language, graphic sex, and cooly observed violence really worked for me. Definitely worth reading, even if you've already seen the movie.