Stray Love

Stray Love

Book - 2012 | 1st ed
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Born of an adulterous affair in London, England, Marcel is ethnically ambiguous, growing up in the racially charged 1960s with a white surrogate father named Oliver. Abandoned as an infant, Marcel is haunted by vague memories of his bohemian mother, and is desperate to know who his real parents are.

When Oliver is promoted to foreign correspondent, he leaves Marcel in the care of his ill-equipped friends, including the beautiful Pippa. The world is being swept by a wave of liberation--coups, revolutions and the end of colonialism. While Oliver rushes toward the action, Marcel is set adrift in swinging London, a city of magic--and a city where he can never quite fit in. Just when it seems they will never be reunited, Marcel is sent to join Oliver in Vietnam. But by the summer of 1963, the war is escalating, and Oliver is finally overwhelmed by his doomed love for Pippa. When Marcel eventually uncovers the shattering truth about his mother, his entire world is rearranged.

Now, as his fiftieth birthday approaches, Marcel is asked to take care of his friend's eleven-year-old daughter, Iris. Prodded by her sharp-eyed company, he reflects on his own bittersweet childhood and the experiences that have shaped his present. Stray Love is beautifully illustrated with original drawings by noted Toronto artist/filmmaker Heather Frise.

Publisher: Toronto : HarperCollins Publishers, c2012
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9781443408592
Branch Call Number: FIC Macl
Characteristics: 317 p. ; 24 cm


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Jul 24, 2020

The main character Marcel, the storyteller himself, is a sensitive, mixed-race person with the unusual upbringing - adopted by a white-race father he's been looking for his birth mother a significant part of his life. He grows up in London in the postwar 60-s facing racism.
Impressed by the author's narration, I discovered a bit about Kyo Maclear. It seems that the story is partly autobiographical, and it's gorgeous how the author puts herself in a man's shoes. It's a neatly and perfectly constructed story of someone's life. In fact, the book is a mix of beautifully intertwined stories of two different epochs. It is full of deep, sometimes peculiar thoughts. I love all the characters, and I've been specially gifted by the presence of a bohemian woman, Pippa. Surrounded by great persons, Marcel feels overwhelming loneliness, so do the readers. It affects the novel though love and memory are beautifully described here.

Feb 01, 2015

love is stray yet tenacious, filtered through family secrets, mixed race children, reverberations of wars, inter-generational insights. good writing.

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