From A to X: A Story in Letters

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9781844672882: From A to X: A Story in Letters

In the dusty, ramshackle town of Suse lives A’ida. Her insurgent lover Xavier has been imprisoned. Resolute, sensuous and tender, A’ida’sletters to the man she loves tell of daily events in the town, and ofits motley collection of inhabitants whose lives flow through hers. Butthe area is under threat, and as a faceless power inexorably encroachesfrom outside, so the smallest details and acts of humanity—anintimate dance, a shared meal—assume for A’ida a life-affirmingsignificance, acts of resistance against the forces that mightotherwise extinguish them.

From A to X is a powerfulexploration of how humanity affirms itself in struggle: imagining acommunity which, besieged by economic and military imperialism, findstranscendent hope in the pain and fragility, vulnerability and sorrowof daily existence.

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About the Author:

Storyteller, novelist, essayist, screenwriter, dramatist and critic, John Berger is one of the most internationally influential writers of the last fifty years. His many books include Ways of Seeing, the fiction trilogy Into Their Labours, Here Is Where We Meet, the Booker Prize-winning novel G, Hold Everything Dear, the Man Booker–longlisted From A to X, and A Seventh Man.

From Publishers Weekly:

Berger is a Booker prize winner, art critic, journalist, essayist and the acclaimed author of Ways of Seeing. His latest is an epistolary novel that concerns two characters: Xavier, the alleged founder of a terrorist cell, and A'ida, his lover. The letters are A'ida's, written to Xavier over the course of his years of imprisonment and squirreled away in a corner of Xavier's small cell. They are adorned by Xavier's margin notes (ranging from political exclamations to quotations about love and longing) and A'ida's sketches. Through A'ida's letters, the reader gets a taste of daily life in the provincial village of Suse, where she works in a pharmacy. Though she puts on a happy face for Xavier, tanks and helicopters haunt the margins, and she drops coded hints that she may still be involved in the resistance. The letters are organized idiosyncratically, but by virtue of their disorder, Berger tanks the standard-issue long-distance love plot and instead provides a rich narrative that winds together the toll on a town besieged and of isolation on a romance; it's a paean to protest, both political and romantic. (Sept.)
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