- 14,99 €
The mesmerising new novel from the twice Booker-shortlisted author of Hot Milk and Swimming Home
At the height of her career, concert pianist Elsa M. Anderson - former child prodigy, now in her thirties - walks off the stage in Vienna, mid-performance.
Now she is in Athens, watching as another young woman, a stranger but uncannily familiar - almost her double - purchases a pair of mechanical dancing horses at a flea market. Elsa wants the horses too, but there are no more for sale. She drifts to the ferry port, on the run from her talent and her history.
So begins a journey across Europe, shadowed by the elusive woman who bought the dancing horses.
A dazzling portrait of melancholy and metamorphosis, August Blue uncovers the ways in which we seek to lose an old story, find ourselves in others and create ourselves anew.
'A writer at the peak of her talents' Lisa Appignanesi
'There's no one touching the brilliance of Deborah Levy's prose today' Lee Rourke
'Levy's strength is her originality of thought and expression' Jeanette Winterson
Levy follows up The Man Who Saw Everything with another magnificent experiment in surrealism, this time with the story of a 34-year-old Londoner who encounters her double. Elsa Anderson, a famous pianist whose star is on the wane after a disastrous Rachmaninov performance, is sight-seeing in Athens when she notices a woman wearing a green raincoat that's similar to hers. Later, while Elsa is with a piano student, the double's voice emerges in Elsa's thoughts, claiming that Elsa is running away from her life. Elsa was orphaned by her mother as a newborn and adopted at five by an influential music teacher. All her life, Elsa has put off reading the adoption papers, preferring instead to channel the mysteries and sadness of her origins into her playing. Levy slowly and skillfully teases out the implications of Elsa's disconnection from herself, which become apparent in a series of striking scenes. While waiting in a London station for a train to Paris, Elsa is surprised to be recognized by a fan, a woman who was "convinced she knew who I was, but I did not know who I was." In Paris and beyond, the voice of Elsa's double continues to return. Levy's sensual descriptions make the conceit come to life ("Her voice inside me. Like a handful of small stones thrown at a window"), and when the two women finally meet, their exchange leads Elsa to a most illuminating revelation. This is a stunner.