Thank you for the days

6 04 2010

One Day by David Nicholls

‘I can imagine you at forty,’ she said, a hint of malice in her voice. ‘I can picture it right now.’

He smiled without opening his eyes. ‘Go on then.’

15th July 1988. Emma and Dexter meet for the first time on the night of their graduation. Tomorrow they must go their separate ways.

So where will they be on this one day next year?

And the year after that? And every year that follows?

Twenty years, two people, ONE DAY

‘It’s rare to find a novel which ranges over the recent past with such authority, and even rarer to find one in which the two leading characters are drawn with such solidity, such painful fidelity, to real life that you really do put the book down with the hallucinatory feeling that they’ve become as well known to you as your closest friends. Hard to imagine anyone encountering characters as well drawn as this and not recognizing the extraordinary talent of the writer who has created them.’ (Jonathan Coe, Guardian Books of the Year)

There are dozens of quotes just like this on the cover and on Amazon. Despite the fact that some of them are from individuals or journals you wouldn’t necessarily turn to for literary advice (eg Parsons, News of the World, Heat, Woman and Home) the novel really does deserve the plaudits. It is a terrifically engaging and moving story and, despite what looks like quite a contrived structure, it works brilliantly well. Very highly recommended.

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