Another amazing novel by Francoise Sagan left me speechless. As I already mentioned, her works are so intoxicating, so light and enjoyable, yet deep, emotional, and provocative. It took me exactly two days to finish Aimez-vous Brahms and bear in mind I have enough exams to study for.
Sagan has the rare talent to portray a rather simple and everyday story, which we have encountered several, maybe hundreds of times, in a way that raises questions we never thought of asking ourselves.
Paula is 39 years old with a wonderful job and in a relationship with a man, who values his freedom and his affairs more than her. Feeling lonely, unappreciated, and unsatisfied, Paula decides to start a relationship with 25-year-old Simon. He is everything her boyfriend Roger is not – available, caring, devoted, at times even obsessive. Simon lives for Paula, to satisfy her needs, to make her happy, and to behave in every way she expects him to. Yet, as Sagan ingeniously points out, love is much more complex, irrational, and unpredictable. Paula believes she always wanted a man like Simon, yet she finds it hard to build a life with him. Is his perfection going to be enough for her or is his child-like devotion and obsession too much to bear? Does Paula feel as his lover, his beloved, or his mother?
I love the novel because it stresses on several important issues. Sometimes what we believe we want in love is not what we really need. Even if the white knight comes along, ready to be our servant, our slave, our most devoted lover, if that spark and that connection is missing, the affair is predestined to a tragic end. Sagan once again astonishes with her profound understanding of the human nature and emotions. A novel that will shake you to the core, make you ask questions about love, life, happiness, and desires, but never leave you indifferent.