By Philippe Beesson
Translated by Molly Ringwald
When someone recommends a book for me, I have to admit I’m often quite nervous. Will I really love it as much as they think I should? How do I explain to them that the book they love I had to stop after a few paragraphs?
Well, I needn’t have worried with Philippe Besson’s superb Lie With Me. Translated beautifully by Molly Ringwald (yes – the Molly Ringwald), the tale is sent in provincial France and follows two young lovers.
It’s a painfully short novel. Just 148 pages split into three beautiful chapters, I didn’t want the book to end. In my last review, I spoke of the authors superb ability to describe, but Besson’s ability to craft characters is divine.
“He taps on his cigarette to make the ashes fall, but he hasn’t smoked it enough. It’s a gesture intended to convey composure, but it only makes him appear more vulnerable.”
It’s no surprise that many people have drawn comparisons to Call Me By Your Name, and André Aciman himself describes the novel as “heart-gripping”.
A love that once dare not speak its name is torn apart as young lovers are divided. A chance encounter between a writer and a boy reignites feelings. Truths that go untold, connections left unmade a life that could have been but never was.
If ever there was a cautionary tale of spending a life denying one’s truth this is it.
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