Afternoon of a Faun by James Lasdun

I enjoyed this book. I can say that it probably won’t be on my top reads for 2019 but I do recommend it. The book opens and introduces Marco Rosedale, a self-centered English man now living in New York City. He had enjoyed some notoriety in the past but was not currently in the mainstream. Next comes a journalist from a national magazine called The Messenger who sent Marco a message through Twitter that he urgently needed to talk with him. From that point forward, “The Ordeal”, as Marco called it, sprouted wings. It seems that an old girlfriend of Marco’s, Julia Gault, was in the process of writing a memoir and Marco was in it. Not in a complimentary manner. While the excerpt strangely painted Marco in a favorable light, at the same time Julia reported that Marco had raped her after a drunken night sometime in the ’70s. The 1970s was a decadent time for Marco and he did admit his morals were loose. Marco admitted knowing Julia but didn’t remember having any meaningful relationship with her. The narrator of this book, who is never named, is a friend of Marco that is also a transplant from England to New York City. He becomes Marco’s confidante during “The Ordeal”.Julia, it seems of late was down on her luck and needed money. Marco suspected that her motive to report an event that never happened must have been from this need. She had been a media star at one point, but that train had left the station. The story unfolds from there. There is a girlfriend and a daughter that Marco desperately endeavors to keep “The Ordeal” a secret from. We don’t get to really get to know them. Nor do we get to know the daughter’s lesbian girlfriend. I can’t say that I particularly liked any of the characters. Particularly Marco. His friend and confidante served only as the narrator of the story. His personal feelings for “the Ordeal” were mostly neutral. I will not say anymore. I hate spoilers so I won’t reveal anymore. I do recommend it.