Synopses & Reviews
In a damp Venetian palace, Oswaldo contemplates the ravages of time to his body and his beloved city. In New York, Lach savors his freedom, having just dropped Vera to join his new love, Francesca, in Venice. In rainy London, Max packs for New Orleans, in pursuit of Lucinde, a woman he barely knows. From New Orleans, Lucinde flies to the aid and comfort of Vera, who has accepted a grant to paint in Venice. While elsewhere in the Crescent City, Anton, leaving for Venice, sketches a good-bye upon the slumbering body of his wife, Josephine. With wit, sympathy, and surpassing deftness, Jane Alison choreographs an intricate dance among these characters, whom love and loneliness, aspiration and desperation, have drawn to two famously romantic, venal, and elusive cities of water.
"Alison's poetic sensibility reveals itself in lyrical, intense prose and surprising juxtapositions. Each character's feverish thoughts rise to a crescendo of emotional turmoil and release, and in the process, carry the reader on a sinuous journey of discovery." Publishers Weekly
"Ambitious, complex, challengingly intellectual and yet Alison manages it all with a clarity, learnedness, and rigor that bring into being a creation of real beauty, albeit also of sorrow. Hers is a real and significant attempt, and a real achievement." Kirkus Reviews
"Although I was keenly interested in the characters and their relationships, I was even more interested in the characters' relationships with their surroundings, past and present....The most lasting union of The Marriage of the Sea is not, finally, between any of the characters but between them and the evanescent, seductive, heartless world they are seeking with such ardent specificity to inhabit and sometimes to leave." Margot Livesey, The New York Times Book Review
"Yes, you must pay close attention to the intricate plot. But in her second novel...Alison wonderfully captures the romantically stymied antics of smart people....Their fluid, eroding liaisons run parallel to the watery decay of both New Orleans and Venice. Fans of Hugo and Dickens will gobble this up." Library Journal
"Jane Alison certainly is a writer to watch." Robert Girardi, The Washington Post
As alluring as "The Love-Artist, " this is a contemporary tale of love and ambition, betrayal and revenge, set in two gloriously watery cities.
About the Author
Jane Alison is the author of The Love-Artist. She lives in Germany.