I read Jeanette Winterson and John Berger’s novels back to back and thus experienced them together. Both books are contemporary tales of love. Berger’s protagonists are young and full of lovestruck charm and glory. The love in Winterson’s book is messier, involving a miserable marriage and an affair, but no less moving. Death casts a shadow over both stories. Indelible choices must be made. Within the crucible of love and disease we see divergent ideas about the heart’s capacity. I felt no need to side with one writer’s vision over the other; they represent different points on a gamut of wisdom.
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