A profound and moving story written by one of America’s best loved authors. Sensitively written and tender throughout, the story centres around 91 year old Ptolemy Grey who has been all but forgotten by his family and the world.
Set in contemporary Los Angeles the narrative shifts repeatedly in Grey’s mind between his current home and his life as a boy in rural Mississippi eighty years earlier. Grey’s life is slowly recounted through his flashbacks and the joy and pain he has felt throughout his childhood and married life gives the book much of its colour. In the present day, Grey’s life takes many unexpected turns, eventually leading him to a 17 year old girl named Robyn. Their blossoming platonic relationship transforms his life and offers him opportunities he could never have imagined. Given a chance to take an experimental and untested drug which can temporarily give him back his memory in return for a much shortened lifespan, Ptolemy is able to regain a sense of purpose and make peace with his past.
Sad beyond words but excellently written, the author’s vivid description of the utter confusion and overwhelming frustrating endured by the failing old man is so real and so frightening that at times it is too much to take. However there is such a lightness of touch to the author’s masterful handling of the subject you won’t want the book to end. A beautiful and encouraging story that will stay with you forever.