“Kennedy’s prose is lively and assured.” —The New York Times Book Review
A good man in a bad world, Jon Sigurdsson is fifty-nine and divorced, a senior civil servant in London who hates many of his colleagues and loathes his work for a government engaged in unmentionable acts.
Meg Williams is a bankrupt accountant—two words you don’t want in the same sentence, or anywhere near your résumé. She’s forty-five and shakily sober, living on Telegraph Hill in London, where she can see the city unfurl below her.
Somewhere out there is Jon, pinballing around the city with a cell phone and a letter-writing habit he can’t break. He’s a man on the brink, leaking government secrets and affection for a woman he barely knows as he runs for his life.
Poignant, deeply funny, and beautifully written, Serious Sweet is about two decent, damaged people trying to make moral choices in an immoral world, ready to sacrifice what’s left of themselves for honesty and for a chance at tenderness. As Jon and Meg navigate the sweet and serious heart of London—passing through twenty-four hours that will change them both forever—they tell an unusual and moving love story.
A. L. Kennedy
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I seriously tried to read this novel. There were sentences in it that were wonderful...but. The book is dense, crammed with philosophic statements, inner thoughts that grow tiresome. Little sketches to illustrate the many thoughts, attitudes, emotions etc. I couldn't get beyond these, couldn't get attached to a story. You need a good story to carry this much melancholy.
Hypnotically detailed interweaving of two damaged and anxious psyches. The reader would be excused for thinking that a happy outcome in any conventional sense would be impossible, as they blunder from misunderstanding to misadventure, but - despite, or maybe because of their inadequacies - you cannot help rooting for their ultimate salvation. Tortuous, of course, as the frustrations mount; but ultimately fulfilling.
Jon and Meg are two good people. One is a good person who has done bad things (or were they really bad?). The other is a person who is good but has been the recipient of bad things. They are two broken souls looking for love. Will they find each other and share the kindness and love that each of them needs? The author's technique develops the inner workings of the characters psyche to the point that you feel that you are actually walking around in their brains. The book is sometimes a little wordy but encapsulates the plot and characters beautifully.
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