Portia Kane is having a meltdown. After escaping her cheating husband and their posh Florida life, she finds herself transported back home and back to square one. In need of saving herself, she sets out to find and resurrect a beloved high-school English teacher who has retired after a violent incident in the classroom. But she quickly learns that it’s not a one-woman job. Luckily she meets a few people on her journey. Can Chuck, the handsome brother of Portia’s old school friend, together with a sassy nun and a metal-head little boy, help Portia’s chances in her bid for renewed hope in the human race? It’s going to be quite a ride. Moving and funny, Love May Fail is about the heartache and daring choices it takes to become the person you know deep down you are meant to be.
I would like to start this review with the following exclamation. OH. MY. WOW!
I’m sorry for the dramatic outburst but Love May Fail by Matthew Quick has floored me. I am currently having what the cool kids call a “book hangover”. It was just so damn good. I’m finding hard to actually express my feelings about Love May Fail in a coherent and concise way because it was just so damn beautiful.
The multi-narrative tale is told from four perspectives – Portia, Mr Vernon, Mr Vernon’s mother Maeve and Chuck Bass (not to be confused with the Chuck Bass from Gossip Girl) and their lives are all intrinsically linked. Each of these characters has a cross to bear and they are all struggling to find meaning or a connection. Yet they all help each other – sometimes on purpose and other times accidentally. It is through the theme of loss that they can all relate to each other.
This sounds very simplistic but I genuinely do not want to give too much away. Ideally, I would like those of you reading this review to run to your nearest bookshop and buy Love May Fail.
Having read all but one of Matthew Quick’s previous novels, I can say with conviction that Love May Fail is his finest work to date.
Love May Fail by Matthew Quick is available now.
Follow Matthew Quick (@MatthewQuick21) on Twitter.