The Only Story - Julian Barnes

Julian Barnes

The Only Story
2018, 213 pages, UK

This is a novel about a complicated love story. It is narrated by Paul, who is looking back at his life. Paul was 19 when he first met Susan, a woman more than twice his age. They met at a tennis club and fell in love. The setting is in the London suburbs in the 1960s. The novel is divided into three parts, written in three different narrative voices: the first, second and third person. With each change, Paul moves on to a new phase in their affair, describing the demands that are placed on him by the lifelong consequences of his first love. Barnes explores - once again - what we forget and remember, the reliability of our memories. ‘The Only Story’ is a beautifully written, deeply moving novel.