Sometimes you meet this novel, this drunk stranger who stops in front of you when you are walking on the street. Now, this one isn’t drunk on itself, it does not speak of the exquisite changes it holds, it doesn’t have a magnificent record to show when you look at it, but, it breathes in fire. It is drunk on it’s own language and sometimes when it loses itself, it speaks of beautiful things, it is almost spiritual. And you are intrigued, and heart broken, for the largest time you just stare, and listen.
He leaves soon, perhaps too soon, and then you stare into space.
You forgot to even ask his name.
This novel, my first my Modiano, who won the Nobel Prize this year is a gem. And for the longest time as it ended, I looked at the last line, trying to make sense of it. I could feel it tearing apart my heart, there was so much it was to be and so many things but, nothing had really measured up had it?
There was still this thumping that wanted more pages but, it was there.
And then I came in terms with it.
The greatest novel is the one which converses with you and leaves you open, for the very nature of art makes it a mirror on self, so when the narrator asks himself “and do not our lives dissolve into the evening as quickly as this grief of childhood?”, you ask the question to yourself, and it is answered with silence. You introspect for days at an end, sometimes you just look out onto the world from the verandah and you feel the change coming from inside.
I had never read Modiano before, and I do not know if I will read him after this, but, for now, he is there, and I have questions I need to answer.