From National Book Award-honored author Edmund White, a wildly hilarious and irreverent novel about a rich older man who falls in love with a young ballerino.
Aldwych West, an eighty-year-old modern-day aristocrat living alone in his Manhattan townhouse, is used to having what he wants. And when he sets eyes on August Dupond, a strong, stunningly beautiful soloist in the New York City Ballet, he decides he must have him. Soon they strike up a closeness that falls between the blurry lines of friendship, sponsorship, and love, and August moves in with Aldwych. But eventually August starts bringing home other men, and a formidable woman in Aldwych's circle named Ernestine also takes a deep interest in the young, enchanting star. Messy entanglements and fierce rivalries ensue, and the result is an unforgettable, outrageous tragicomedy that explores the many layers of love and sexual desire as only Edmund White can.
“Studded with endless witticisms and brilliant social comedy, this book is likely the most clever and creative pornographic novel ever written by an octogenarian. . . . Everything you love about White, explicit sex, French champagne, and insouciant murder included.” —Kirkus Reviews
“As ever, White is a master of social comedy and wry observations . . . Readers will delight in this immersion into a lurid world of passion.” —Publishers Review, starred review
“White's literary soap opera is engaging and compulsively readable, and in typical White fashion, there is more than a soupçon of sex.” —Booklist
“White continues his legacy as a pioneer of queer literature with this mesmerizingly erotic tragicomedy.” —Buzzfeed
“The work of Edmund White stands as an unignorable achievement in the past half century of American literature. It is astonishing to see him, in his ninth decade, after more than a dozen novels, writing with such daring and abandon, with the true artist's bracing, vivifying disregard for the stifling canons of good taste. He is one of our living treasures, an inspiration and a wonder.” —Garth Greenwell, author of Cleanness and What Belongs to You
“[Edmund White] is the paterfamilias of queer literature.” —New York Times
“[Edmund White is] one of the three or four most virtuosic living writers of sentences in the English language.” —Dave Eggers, author of THE EVERY
“One of White's innumerable gifts is that he can write frankly and graphically about sex and still find nuance, sanctity, and elevation.” —Newsday on A PREVIOUS LIFE
“The books by 80-year-old American novelist, memoirist and essayist Edmund White-honest, fierce and joyful explorations of love, sex and family-have been breaking boundaries and engaging readers for nearly 50 years.” —AARP on A PREVIOUS LIFE
“Edmund White has become a legend writing about the messy paths on which lust and romance can lead us. His latest proves that practice just might make perfect . . . White's story of conquest and betrayal is acutely observed and sharply funny.” —Town & Country
“[A] sizzling romp-White confidently invites readers into this rarified world, and into that of BDSM, but the greatest pain is in Aldwych's heart.” —Publishers Weekly
“Love may be universal, but no one writes about love quite like Edmund White. The veteran author returns with an outrageous, tender novel that complicates contemporary ideas of what traditional, 'appropriate' desires and relationships look like . . . this novel is as mischievous as it is thought-provoking. It is Edmund White at his very best.” —BookPage, Starred Review