Alfred and Emily Author:Doris Lessing In this profoundly moving book, Nobel Laureate Doris Lessing explores the lives of her parents, each irrevocably damaged by the Great War. In the fictional first half of Alfred and Emily, she imagines the happier lives her parents might have made for themselves had there been no war. This is followed by a piercing examination of their rel... more »ationship as it actually was in the shadow of the devastating global conflict. "Here I still am," says Lessing, "trying to get out from under that monstrous legacy, trying to get free." Triumphantly, with Alfred and Emily, she has done just that.« less
I had such high hopes for this book. Unique plot device, set in an era that I particularly enjoy reading about, and bearing the seal of 'Nobel Prize in Literature.' The first part (the novella) is boring and the second part (the memoir), strangely incomplete and lacking. I'm in the 7th decade of my life, and I've read a lot of books, but I just didn't get this one. Lessing's prose is not difficult to read, so I kept with it until the end, hoping for some nugget of wisdom or some cohesion of all the loose ends. It was not to be.