Julie Maxwell (English, 1995)
You Can Live Forever is set partly in Christ Church and tells the story of Alice. Her father William is a part-time arsonist, rejected husband, ladies’ man, fraudster – and a very devoted father. Meanwhile, mother Oonagh and brother Peter are fervent adherents to the true religion of the Unbelievable Potential of Human Beings. For them, The Plain Truth just is, like marmalade or the Grand Canyon. But Alice is losing the knack of living forever. And then there is the exacting art of fornication.
Likened to Jeanette Winterson’s Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit, Maxwell’s novel is ‘a boisterous, colourful beginning’ (The Observer), written with ‘a vast, tenacious intellect’ (The Herald), ‘boasts a down-to-earth charm that is relentlessly witty’ (Time Out), ‘much more than a quirky read’ (The Guardian), ‘an excellent debut’ (The Literary Review). It was Book of the Month on BBC Radio Five Live in May, and won a Betty Trask Award in June.
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