The Trick of It
The Trick of It by Michael Frayn is a compelling drama, a vivid study of obsession and a playful account of life at the fringes of the creative world.
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He knows everything about her before they meet; more about her nine novels that she does herself. He has devoted his life to studying and teaching them, even though he is four times as clever as she is. Now, as she steps off the train, arriving to do a lecture for his students, something about her in the flesh sets him thinking. Maybe he has a chance to resolve the one remaining mystery at the heart of things . . .
Brilliantly funny, perceptive, and, at the death, chilling.
Dazzling . . . the tonal tightrope is superbly negotiated by Frayn in a novel which is just about as perfect a construct as we are likely to read this or any year.
Ah, now this is writing . . . Written in prose like spring rain, with a rare sweetness that steers away from the cruelties of Waugh or the slapstick of Wodehouse.
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