The Only Story

The Only Story

A Novel

Book - 2018
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6
"It is the early 1960s, and in a staid suburb fifteen miles south of London, Paul, nineteen, home from university for the holidays, is urged by his mother to join the tennis club. At the mixed doubles tournament he is partnered with Mrs. Susan Macleod: she's twice his age, and the married mother of two nearly grown-up daughters. Soon Paul and Susan embark on an unconventional affair, despite the disapproval of Paul's parents and the seething resentment of Susan's husband, who can't quite play along with the ruse that Paul is merely a surrogate son and family friend."--
Publisher: Toronto : Random House Canada, ©2018.
ISBN: 9780735274730
Characteristics: 253 pages ;,20 cm.

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n
nannerl
Aug 15, 2018

Thoroughly enjoyed this book. Can't think of a description that doesn't seem trite, given that the book is about life, really. And love as well. And many simple yet haunting insights in between. Very well done. I found it hard to put down - not that it was a mystery, but because there was something delicious on nearly every page.

j
jbslade
Jul 07, 2018

Barnes is, imo, the best novelist alive today. "The Only Story" kept me engrossed from cover to cover (obviously--I picked it up yesterday and finished this afternoon). It's a poignant, realistic look at Love. Can't recommend it enough.

h
hoipoli
Jun 29, 2018

I think that Julian Barnes is a brilliant writer and was looking forward to this most recent book. It was a very engrossing read and the change in the main character's thinking about his life at the end of the book justified the telling of the story. It was a very insightful concept of people having that one true love that made their only story. I would recommend this book.

l
lblundell
Jun 18, 2018

Too much self pity and navel gazing. I didn't finish the book as I felt it a waste of time.

l
laphampeak
May 31, 2018

Barnes has a way of getting you into the head of the main character, Paul, who falls in love at a young age with Susan Macleod, married and older. The development and complexities of the relationship over the years is an interesting ride if you fly with it. As always, Barnes interjects the dialogue with quick wit and humor - Re: Susan believing in afterlife "Oh, I don't believe in that. It would all cause far too much trouble. All those people who spent their lives getting away from one another, and suddenly there they all are again, like some dreadful bridge party."

c
Candaceb108
May 15, 2018

A lovely book, it will appeal greatly to those whose lives are close to their horizon. An old man remembers his salad days and an unconventional affair that shaped him and the remainder of his life. The last section of the book is less interesting to those of us who are older as it describes these feelings of reminiscence, of paths diverging.

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