Added: Naudia Cogdell - Date: 29.12.2021 15:00 - Views: 34567 - Clicks: 5380
The pleasures and perils of sustaining human connection while physically separated have inspired writers from Sally Rooney to Vladimir Nabokov. The problem of being separated from the person you love is as old as transport. But 50 years ago, international telephone conversations were off the table. Thirty years ago: no internet. My grandad proposed by letter, from a two-year posting on an island in the Indian Ocean, having met my grandmother once.
More people are in long-distance relationships than ever careers, family, global pandemic but the experience has changed. We expect immediacy, to know what is going on now. But so much can go wrong!
Calls are missed, messages are over-analysed, arguments that could be ended with a kiss fester. In my novel Wild PetsIris — a depressed writer studying in New York — is in two transatlantic relationships, one with her boyfriend, Ezra, who is touring with his band, and one with her best friend, Nance. Technology promises a sense of togetherness, but it cannot appease our hunger for physical closeness.
According to the internet, one LDR strategy is to read the same book at the same time and discuss it. I never had the diligence. But the idea of being in a LDR while reading a book about loving at a distance is pleasingly meta. Here are my recommendations:. The novel alternates between their perspectives, so we see how each experiences their love story inflected differently. It is longing accelerated: Henry is always vanishing, and Clare, missing him.
But they wring the juice out of each moment they have together. The book is near edible in its descriptions of food, books, punk, sex and the smell of manuscript paper. Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie A study of how plotlines in love stories can break apart and then converge. Ifemelu and Obinze fall in love at high school in Lagos.
She goes to the US to study. They both face a matrix of different, racially loaded challenges. Their bond is close and this book shows how hard it is for young people to grow at the same pace in the face of so much change. As readers we see what happens and how the girls choose to relay events to each other, which tells us a lot about self-styling; what we share and what we choose to hold back. I really enjoyed how freely the girls express themselves in writing, and the scope of the subjects they discuss online compared with their shyness around each other.
Such a space is the only one in which she can keep him and their relationship alive.
Ada or Ardor by Vladimir Nabokov This book would reward diligent study by a couple keen for something to talk about. The book was written over three years while Nelson was heartbroken and caring for a close friend rendered quadriplegic. I want you to know, I no longer hold you responsible. The Neapolitan novels by Elena Ferrante Over the 60 years covered by the four books, Lila and Lenu when they are talking switch modes of communication — letters, phone calls, their near-psychic connection. One summer, Lenu writes an emotional letter that is s long. In a moment of innate connection, burnished by lust, time and distance can fall away temporarily.
In one of my favourite moments, they both fall about laughing at a joke made 30 years earlier. She falls in love, panics, and starts writing letters to God. It captures how much of long-distance relationships relies on loving the person you believe the other will become, and a willingness to both narrativise your own love story and persist in imagining its future. Wild Pets by Amber Medland is published by Faber.
To help the Guardian and Observer, you can buy your copy from guardianbookshop. Top 10s Books. Top 10 books about long-distance relationships. Amber Medland. Wed 8 Sep Wild Pets by Amber Medland review — an enjoyably arch post-campus tale.
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Top 10 books about long-distance relationships