Books Magazine

The Forgotten Waltz by Anne Enright

By Bluestalking @Bluestalking

 

ORANGE PRIZE LONGLIST TITLE

 

Forgottenwaltz

WW Norton & Co., 2012, Fiction, 272 pp., Purchased - Kindle.

 

"The next few days were full of shouting. Much cliché. It seemed that everything was said. I mean everything, by everybody. The whole thing felt like a single sentence; one you could imagine bellowed, hissed, scrawled in lipstick on the bathroom mirror; you could carve it into your own flesh, you could chisel it on a fucking gravestone. And not one word of it mattered. Not one stupid word.

You never.

I always."

- The Forgotten Waltz

 

Oh, lordy lordy. If things keep going at this rate I'll never shorten the list of candidates. Longlisters, stop writing so damn well. THAT IS AN ORDER.

Seriously, I should have known Anne Enright would smack my gob, because: one: she's Irish and two: I was among the select few who thought her Booker winner - The Gathering - was superb. The lowest-selling Booker Prize winning novel of all time and I lurved it, dear reader.

The Forgotten Waltz, another - in my opinion - unjustifiably underappreciated, fine novel, is so very well described in this bit from Elle I'll steal it:

"A new, unapologetic kind of adultery novel. Narrated by the proverbial other woman—Gina Moynihan, a sharp, sexy, darkly funny thirtysomething IT worker—The Forgotten Waltz charts an extramarital affair from first encounter to arranged, settled, everyday domesticity. . . . This novel’s beauty lies in Enright’s spare, poetic, off-kilter prose—at once heartbreaking and subversively funny. It’s built of startling little surprises and one fresh sentence after another. Enright captures the heady eroticism of an extramarital affair and the incendiary egomania that accompanies secret passion: For all their utter ordinariness, Sean and Gina feel like the greatest lovers who've ever lived.”—Elle

It's the following quote I think sums the novel up so well:

 

"But I am being hard on my husband, who I loved, and who is now fighting with me about money, never mind broken dreams. In fact everyone is fighting with me about money: my sister, too. Who would have thought love could be so expensive? I should sit down and calculate it out at so much per kiss. The price of this house plus the price of that house, divided by two, plus the price of the house we are in. Thousands. Every time I touch him. Hundreds of thousands. Because we took it too far. We should have stuck to car parks and hotel bedrooms (no, really, we should really have stuck to car parks and hotel bedrooms). If we keep going the price will come down - per event, as it were. Twenty years of love can be consummated for tuppence. After a lifetime it is almost free."

 

It's the price of their affair, the relationship they never believed would sour, the vitriol spewed by former spouses, friends and relatives whose respect they've lost. It's reality, in other words, hitting with a vengeance, and the knowing - too late - it could never have turned out otherwise.

So much for Prince Charming and Princess Happily Ever After. The moral: Love Sucks.

But the worst of it is, do I need to put The Forgotten Waltz on the Shortlist as well? And, will there be anything left once I've finished reading all the Longlisters I can fit into my schedule?

This is the true moral dilemma. The literary lust that dare not speak its name.

Is anyone else playing the Guess the Orange Prize 2012 Winner Game? It's ever so lonely playing by myself.

I AM ON YOUR TRAIL.

 

 

Anne Enright on why there are are so many good Irish writers. Brilliant. Listen (audio only) if you have a few minutes.

 

Reviews:

the Paris Review

The New York Times

Guardian.co.uk

 


Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog

These articles might interest you :

  • Sunday Soak: Kawasan Falls and Mantayupan Falls

    Sunday Soak: Kawasan Falls Mantayupan

    One Sunday, SpongeBungot Squarepants, Patrick Star, and Sandy Cheeks, residents of the city of Cebukini Bottom, decided to go southwest for a change of scenery. Read more

    By  Mustachio
    TRAVEL
  • The Ten Best Books I Read in 2015

    Best Books Read 2015

    This year's top ten reads reflects my interests pretty well: only one work of fiction, one memoir, one work of scripture, and the rest all research or theory... Read more

    By  Russellarbenfox
    SOCIETY
  • Bold Predictions for 2016

    Bold Predictions 2016

    2016 is almost upon us and the staff here at Long Awkward Pause decided to pull the Ouija board out of the LAP game closet, the Crystal Ball from under Ned’s... Read more

    By  Christopher De Voss
    HUMOR
  • Holiday Favorites

    Holiday Favorites

    Happy New Year!Happy New Year!   I want to send my sincere wishes for happy blessings to come your way in 2016!  Today I’m sharing some of my holiday... Read more

    By  Mimiavocado
    FOOD & DRINK
  • How Joining the Crowd Will Earn Me Money

    Out with the old, in with the new. For lack of a more compelling mantra to start my new year with, I’m afraid I’m going to have to stick with that for now. Read more

    By  Peppertan
    FAMILY, HOME
  • Thank You 2015

    Grateful for...my travel financier (disguised as a job)waking up every day so I could earn my travel fund (salary)my manager for approving my leaves and for... Read more

    By  Mustachio
    TRAVEL
  • New Release Review - MARK OF THE WITCH (DVD)

    Release Review MARK WITCH (DVD)

    A teenage girl discovers the dark secret of her origins. (function(d) { var params = { id: "a7d4d800-9c47-4c13-8ece-5a9dad58e289", d:... Read more

    5 hours, 10 minutes ago by   Themoviewaffler
    ENTERTAINMENT, MOVIES

Magazines