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Forever is the Worst Long Time: A Novel
     

Forever is the Worst Long Time: A Novel

5.0 1
by Camille Pagan
 

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From acclaimed author Camille Pagán comes a wry, heartfelt exploration of love and loss.

When struggling novelist James Hernandez meets poet Louisa “Lou” Bell, he’s sure he’s just found the love of his life. There’s just one problem: she’s engaged to his oldest friend, Rob. So James toasts their union and

Overview

From acclaimed author Camille Pagán comes a wry, heartfelt exploration of love and loss.

When struggling novelist James Hernandez meets poet Louisa “Lou” Bell, he’s sure he’s just found the love of his life. There’s just one problem: she’s engaged to his oldest friend, Rob. So James toasts their union and swallows his desire.

As the years pass, James’s dreams always seem just out of reach—he can’t finish that novel, can’t mend his relationship with his father, can’t fully commit to a romantic relationship. He just can’t move on. But after betrayal fractures Lou’s once-solid marriage, she turns to James for comfort.

When Lou and James act on their long-standing mutual attraction, the consequences are more heartbreaking—and miraculous—than either of them could have ever anticipated. Then life throws James one more curveball, and he, Rob, and Lou are forced to come to terms with the unexpected ways in which love and loss are intertwined.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
01/01/2017
When James Hernandez meets his best friend Rob's fiancée Louisa "Lou" Bell in 1988, and she utters the prophetic words "this story ends with loss," he knows two things immediately: Lou isn't like any of the other girls whom Rob has dated, and James is blindingly in love with her. His love of Lou, unfortunately, stops him dead in his tracks. He fails to finish any of the novels that he's started writing, he damages his romantic relationships, and he gives up an academic track for a more middle-of-the-road career. Then Lou and Rob go through a separation, and a one-night stand between Lou and Jim leads to a baby girl, Emerson. James and Lou eventually form a platonic parenting relationship and James marries another, realizing that his life became stuck in his pursuit of perfection. But life isn't always perfect, and it does always end in loss. What matters is love. VERDICT Pagán's (Life and Other Near-Death Experiences) bittersweet novel, which takes place from 1998 to 2016, deserves a wide readership among women's lit readers.—Jennifer Mills, Shorewood-Troy Lib., IL
Kirkus Reviews
2016-11-07
A tale of love and loss, with some unexpected twists along the way.When James Hernandez first meets Louisa "Lou" Bell, he instantly falls in love with her. Only trouble is, she's engaged to his best friend, Rob. For James, a struggling writer and teacher, Lou is the ideal woman—a beautiful and thoughtful poet. As the years go by, James both obsesses over Lou from afar and watches as his own dreams of romance and success slowly peter out. When Lou and Rob's relationship begins to waver, James can't help but be there for Lou, attempting to rationalize away his betrayal of his childhood friend. Years after he first laid eyes on her, and with Lou and Rob's marriage near its end, James finds out that his attraction to Lou is mutual. Pagán's (Life and Other Near-Death Experiences, 2015, etc.) latest could have been a traditional love story but ends up far more complicated and heart-wrenching. Throughout the text, James addresses an absent "you," whom he quickly identifies as Lou's child. Though its format does at first provide more questions than answers, it is clear that he's telling his story—one of love and friendship, heartbreak and betrayal—with urgency. While the younger James and Lou feel slightly hollow, they do develop more complex personalities over time. What starts as merely James' obsession with Lou does eventually blossom into a more nuanced understanding of who she truly is. James begins the novel with a foreboding quote from Lou: "This story ends with loss." And while this is certainly true of Pagán's tale, it is thankfully both more complicated and more satisfying than that. Relationships, both romantic and platonic, are in flux for all of these characters as they struggle to live without regret.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781477818381
Publisher:
Amazon Publishing
Publication date:
02/07/2017
Pages:
284
Product dimensions:
5.60(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.30(d)

Meet the Author

Camille Pagán is the author of the bestselling novel Life and Other Near-Death Experiences, which was recently optioned for film, and the international bestselling novel The Art of Forgetting. Her work has appeared in Forbes; Men’s Health; O, The Oprah Magazine; Real Simple; WebMD.com; and many other publications and websites. She lives in the Midwest with her husband, two children, and too many animals. Visit her at www.camillenoepagan.com or connect with her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CamillePaganBooks, on Instagram at camille_pagan, or on Twitter @cnoepagan.

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Forever is the Worst Long Time: A Novel 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Chris721 15 days ago
What an emotional roller coaster of a book! I laughed, I cried, and felt every emotion of the characters! This book is about James, his best friend Rob, and Rob's wife Lou. James finds himself in love with Lou but doesn't act on it since she is with his best friend. Everything James wants in life is just out of reach. He can't finish the novel he is writing and he is not a very good professor. Lou and Rob's marriage falls apart and Lou turns to James. This changes forever the lives of James, Lou and Rob. This is a beautifully emotional story of love, friendship, and family. Thank you so very much to the author for an arc of this book for an honest review.