book cover of Love Remains

Love Remains

A novel by

"When the future ended, Nicholas discovered, you left London and went to New York. Even at Christmas..." The opening lines of Glen Duncan's second novel, Love Remains, announce the enigma which lures the reader into this book. What is it in Nicholas's world that has come to an end, and what does it have to do with the worldly perversity of Mickey--the woman who moves him into a Manhattan apartment--and the student love story, told in flashback, which begins a few pages into the novel: "Six years earlier Nicholas had married Chloe". The five sections of the novel--"Love", "Blood", "Continue", "Water" and "Necessities"--present a numbingly truthful, sometimes ruthless, anatomisation of love, hate and sex between the two protagonists. At times, Duncan's probing reads like reportage, an account drawn up from a distance for a reader called upon to witness whatever it is that is about to happen; at others, the writing is full of effort and exhibition: "Breasts like appalled witnesses, blonde hair a smashed aureole on the pillow".

As the two plots begin to converge, however, that effort, its careful attention to the apparently mundane conversation between Nicholas and Chloe--Sunday morning conversation over the newspaper report of the new London Ripper, for example--begins to pay off. Described as a writer who can make the "ordinary remarkable", Duncan has managed to bring the commonplace strangeness of sexuality into contact with the different extremes of sexual violence in an uneasy, but finally compelling, novel. --Vicky Lebeau

Genre: General Fiction

Used availability for Glen Duncan's Love Remains

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