Several stories inhabit Roger Lewinter's first small book to appear in English, Story of Love in Solitude. Each story takes the form of a loop: a spider who won't stop returning; camellias that flourish and then die; dying parents whose presence is always yet felt; turning again and again to work on Rilke translations; a younger man whom the narrator sees each week at the Geneva street markets. All the tales touch on the possibility, the open possibility of love--a loop without end.
Lewinter's short fictional works are at once prose poems and a form of dreaming; they are akin to the great French tradition of things sparking emotions and emotions sparking things--part Sarraute, part Robbe-Grillet, part Perec. Plot is not really the point of his meditative works. Lewinter concerns himself more with perception, apperception, and sudden inflections of grace: loss and beauty meet in an explosion of joy, which becomes, "in its brilliance, a means of transmittal."
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About the Author
Lewinter's uncanny gift for dissecting the abstract and unspoken aspects of attraction and self-awareness raises fiction to a higher level.--Monica Carter
Lewinter's prose--lengthy sentences, punctuated largely by commas, semicolons, and dashes--has hypnotic appeal when combined with his tendency toward meandering asides and lovely melancholy.
[W]riters working at this level of care, the shifting of a word, a comma, can have a tremendous impact, even a secret drama.--Brian Evenson
[Lewinter's] unique literary voice...is that of an obsessive, a philosopher, and a miniaturist.--Karl Wolff
Arriving in elegant, bilingual editions beautifully translated by Rachel Careau, The Attraction of Things and Story of Love in Solitude are the first two books by Roger Lewinter to be published in English. Although written in the 1980s, these works seem anything but dated. Instead they feel immune to literary fashion. They exert the fascination of something done carefully, even exhaustively, for its own sake rather than to please anyone else.--Dorian Stuber"The Rules of Attraction: On Roget Lewinter" (06/12/2017)
The Attraction of Things and Story of Love in Solitude, two short books by Roger Lewinter, are the first by the French author, editor, and translator to appear in English. Majestically rendered by Rachel Careau, their publication represents an opportunity to give Lewinter the prominence he deserves...--K. Thomas Kahn