Creation Lake

Creation Lake

From the Booker Prize-shortlisted author


Brought to you by Penguin.

From Rachel Kushner, Booker Prize finalist and two-time National Book Award finalist, comes a new novel about a seductive and cunning American woman who infiltrates an anarchist collective in France

Sadie Smith – a thirty-four-year-old American undercover agent of ruthless tactics, bold opinions and clean beauty – is sent by her mysterious but powerful employers to a remote corner of France. Her mission: to infiltrate a commune of radical eco-activists led by the charismatic svengali Bruno Lacombe.

Sadie casts her cynical eye over this region of ancient farms and sleepy villages, and at first finds Bruno’s idealism laughable – he lives in a Neanderthal cave and believes the path to enlightenment is a return to primitivism. But just as Sadie is certain she’s the seductress and puppet master of those she surveils, Bruno Lacombe is seducing her with his ingenious counter-histories, his artful laments, his own tragic story.

Beneath this parodic spy novel about a woman caught in the crossfire between the past and the future lies a profound treatise on human history. Creation Lake is Rachel Kushner’s finest achievement yet – a work of high art, high comedy and irresistible pleasure.

'Reinvents the spy novel in one cool, erudite gesture' HERNAN DIAZ

©2024 Rachel Kushner (P)2024 Penguin Audio


  • As I read Creation Lake, I was amazed that Kushner was pulling off such a feat. I kept thinking, 'this can’t possibly work’ and yet it kept working. I was completely immersed and mesmerized. It’s a highly plotted fast-paced noir and yet full of ideas and depth. I've never read anything like it. Rachel Kushner is the most exciting writer of her generation
    Bret Easton Ellis, author of American Psycho

About the author

Rachel Kushner

Rachel Kushner is the author of The Hard Crowd, her acclaimed essay collection, and the internationally bestselling novels The Mars Room, The Flamethrowers, and Telex from Cuba, as well as a book of short stories, The Strange Case of Rachel K. She has won the Prix Médicis and been shortlisted for the Booker Prize, the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Folio Prize, and was twice a finalist for the National Book Award in Fiction. She is a Guggenheim Foundation Fellow and the recipient of the Harold D. Vursell Memorial Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Her books are translated into twenty-seven languages.
Learn More

Sign up to the Penguin Newsletter

For the latest books, recommendations, author interviews and more