Love After Love: A Novel (Hardcover)
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“A stellar debut . . . about an unconventional family, fear, hatred, violence, chasing love, losing it and finding it again just when we need it most.”—The New York Times Book Review
WINNER OF THE COSTA BOOK AWARD • “A wonder . . . [This book] teems with real, Trinidadian life.”—Claire Adam, award-winning author of Golden Child
SEMI-FINALIST FOR THE OCM BOCAS PRIZE • One of the Best Books of the Summer: Time • The Guardian • Goop • Women’s Day • LitHub
After Betty Ramdin’s husband dies, she invites a colleague, Mr. Chetan, to move in with her and her son, Solo. Over time, the three become a family, loving each other deeply and depending upon one another. Then, one fateful night, Solo overhears Betty confiding in Mr. Chetan and learns a secret that plunges him into torment.
Solo flees Trinidad for New York to carve out a lonely existence as an undocumented immigrant, and Mr. Chetan remains the singular thread holding mother and son together. But soon, Mr. Chetan’s own burdensome secret is revealed, with heartbreaking consequences. Love After Love interrogates love and family in all its myriad meanings and forms, asking how we might exchange an illusory love for one that is truly fulfilling.
In vibrant, addictive Trinidadian prose, Love After Love questions who and how we love, the obligations of family, and the consequences of choices made in desperation.
Praise for Love After Love
“Love After Love is gift after gift. An unforgettable symphony of love and loss, heartache and guilt, and the secrets and lies that pull us together, and tear us apart. Dazzlingly told in the most electrifying prose you will read all year.”—Marlon James, Booker Prize–winning author of Black Leopard, Red Wolf
“This book teems with real, Trinidadian life: neighbors so nosy they know your business before it happens; descriptions of food that'll have you googling recipes; feting and liming and plenty of sex. There's darkness here, too—violence, loneliness, moments of despair—and how Ingrid Persaud weaves all these elements together in one book, with so much warmth and humor and love for her characters, is a wonder.”—Claire Adam, award-winning author of Golden Child
About the Author
Born in Trinidad, Ingrid Persaud won the Commonwealth Short Story Prize in 2017 and the BBC Short Story Award in 2018. She studied law at the London School of Economics and was a legal academic before earning degrees in fine art at Goldsmiths College and Central Saint Martins. Her writing has appeared in Granta, Prospect, and Pree magazines. Persaud lives in London and Barbados.
“Family lies at the center of this bright, generous debut. Love after Love offers both a window into Caribbean literature and a wider lens on immigration, race, and sexuality. Mostly, though, it’s just a great story; funny, tender, and true.”—Entertainment Weekly
“[Ingrid] Persaud’s novel Love After Love . . . is centered on her birthplace of Trinidad and told in the dialect of people who live there. Persaud’s colloquial style is part of what sets apart her depiction of those everyday, everywhere things like the relationship between a parent and a child.”—Time
“Steeped in loneliness, Ingrid Persaud’s debut novel is also full of craving for love, the failures and tragedies alongside the pleasures of food and flesh, and the joys of human relationships.”—Paul McVeigh, Irish Times
“Ingrid Persaud’s prose is near flawless and her storytelling is compelling, but what really stands out in her novel is something more than its outstanding literary merits—it’s her compassion. It’s not just that Persaud creates well-drawn and believable characters; she feels for them and draws us into that feeling.”—Kei Miller, author of Augustown
“The most heartbreakingly realistic depiction of Trinidadian society since V. S. Naipaul’s A House for Mr. Biswas. The ear for dialogue resembles Hussain; the family relations recall McGinnis; the burn of love and desire perhaps exceeds Long, McCann, and Nelson.”—Vahni Capildeo, author of Odyssey Calling
“Restless, heartbreaking, and intensely spellbinding, Love After Love will stay with you long after the last page.”—André Aciman, author of Call Me by Your Name
“Love After Love is funny, REALLY funny. It made me ugly cry and put me right in Trinidad. A story of second chances and third chances, love and secrets. This will be big!”—Jessie Burton, #1 internationally bestselling author of The Miniaturist and The Confession
“Ingrid Persaud will crack open your heart with the compassion and warmth she pours into her characters. A must read.”—Read It Forward
“Persaud’s auspicious debut traces the gut-wrenching lives of a makeshift Trinidadian family over the past two decades. . . . ”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Beautifully written.”—Booklist (starred review)