Last Lovers

Overview

This love story, by the author of Birdy and Dad, is set in Paris in 1975. Jack, 49, and American, has walked out on his fast-lane corporate career and troubled marriage to return to his first love, painting. He lives a hand-to-mouth existence in Paris, struggling to express his long-suppressed feelings through his art. While painting in the park (and blocking the sidewalk), an elderly blind woman walks into him, knocking him off his feet and getting herself smeared with paint. ...

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10/01/1998 Paperback Good **SHIPPED FROM UK** We believe you will be completely satisfied with our quick and reliable service. All orders are dispatched as swiftly as possible! ... Buy with confidence! *****PLEASE NOTE: This item is shipping from an authorized seller in Europe. In the event that a return is necessary, you will be able to return your item within the US. To learn more about our European sellers and policies see the BookQuest FAQ section***** Read more Show Less

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Overview

This love story, by the author of Birdy and Dad, is set in Paris in 1975. Jack, 49, and American, has walked out on his fast-lane corporate career and troubled marriage to return to his first love, painting. He lives a hand-to-mouth existence in Paris, struggling to express his long-suppressed feelings through his art. While painting in the park (and blocking the sidewalk), an elderly blind woman walks into him, knocking him off his feet and getting herself smeared with paint. Mirabelle, 71, is small, elegant, and radiant.

They fall slowly, carefully, and improbably in love, and into a tender physically passionate affair. While Mirabelle's tremendous sense of life inspires Jack to paint with new vision and freedom, he shares with her the mysteries of passion, and frees her from the traumatic event that blinded her in childhood.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In this touchingly whimsical tale darkened by the undercurrent of a serious parable, Wharton ( Birdy ; Franky Furbo ) explores moments in which sexuality and art intersect. As in Wharton's previous novels, the protagonist is an artist, here, American expatriate painter Jack, 49, who is recovering from a broken marriage and years of scrambling in the corporate rat race. Now penniless, Jack subsists as a squatter in a Paris attic and paints in a public square, where he meets Mirabelle, a blind, 71-year-old, self-appointed pigeon lady who cares for the birds who flutter about his easel. Between Jack and Mirabelle springs a friendship that deepens into an improbable but impassioned sexual union. Mirabelle's blindness is psychological; its sudden onset occurred at age 14 when her mother committed suicide. While their love is often heavily belabored (``In your blindness you taught me to see,'' Jack tells her), it does produce miracles. Difficulties arise when Jack's wife wants him back, but Mirabelle's frailty in the end helps him solve his dilemma. Jack's bizarre homage to Mirabelle at the story's close somewhat redeems the novel from sentimentality. (May)
Library Journal
``Believing is seeing,'' proclaims Wharton in the epigram to this charming novel, and he then proceeds admirably to prove it. Jack is a fiftyish American in Paris. Having abandoned a too successful career and the family life that went sour because of it, he aims to fulfill his lifelong dream of becoming a painter. A chance meeting with a blind old lady--she inadvertently crashes into his easel--helps him realize his dream. For Mirabelle is a remarkable woman who, though hysterically blind since witnessing her mother's suicide as a child, nevertheless demonstrates a penetrating comprehension of the world. As the newly dubbed Jacques tries to describe his paintings to Mirabelle and she tries to describe her memories of a Paris she has not seen for years, he learns to see in a new way. Their friendship eventually blossoms into a tender yet physically passionate love far removed in its thoughtful depiction from the standard erotic entanglements of contemporary page and screen. The story may seem improbable, but Wharton makes us believe--and see. Highly recommended.-- Barbara Hoffert, ``Library Journal''
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781862071391

Meet the Author

William Wharton was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1925. During the Second World War, Wharton served in the US army, until an injury led to his discharge. In 1978, Wharton’s first novel, ‘Birdy’, was published to critical acclaim. Before his death in 2008, Wharton penned 8 further novels, and 3 memoirs.

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