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Your Face Tomorrow 2: Dance and Dream

by Javier Marias

Don’t expect a page-turning narrative, but do expect a thoughtful and reflective book which draws you in. This beautifully written novel deals with the events of a single night and their wider meanings and repercussions. If you are a person who thinks over what you've done and said, and how it affects people, then this is the book for you.

Extract

'There are many individuals who experience their life as if it were the material for some detailed report,' I had said to Tupra when interpreting Dick Dearlove for him, 'they inhabit that life pending its hypothetical or future plot. They don’t give it much thought, it's just a way of experiencing things, companionable, let's say, as if they were spectators of or permanent witnesses to their activities and passivities, even their most futile steps and during the dullest of times. Perhaps the narcissistic daydream prevalent among so many of our contemporaries, and sometimes know as “consciousness”, is nothing more than a substitute for the old idea or vague perception of the omnipresence of God, who was always watching and saw every second of each of our lives, it was very flattering in a way, and a relief, despite the inconveniences, that is, the implicit element of threat and punishment and the terrifying belief that nothing could ever be concealed from everyone and for ever; in any case, three or four generations of predominant doubt and incredulity are not enough for Man to accept, that his gruelling and unasked-for existence goes on without anyone ever observing or watching or even taking an interest in it, without anyone judging it or disapproving of it.'
Translated by Margaret Jull Costa

Parallels

The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
Le Grand Meaulnes by Henri Alain-Fournier
Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes
 

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