By Jayne Joso
Published by Alcemi
A love-letter to architecture set in the dazzling, eccentric world of the star architect. After the death of her architect husband and the discovery of intimate correspondence with another woman, Gaia Ore is about to learn some harsh but rewarding lessons on the nature of erotic and artistic obsession.
Having lived and worked in Japan and China, Jayne Joso now lives in the UK. As well as fiction and drama, she has written on architecture, Japanese arts and culture. Joso's first children's book, How do you Feel?, was published by Benesse in Japan and her first play, China's Smile, commissioned in celebration of China's Children's Day, enjoyed a long theatre run at the Ye Fu Theatre, Zhejiang, and was later televised. Her first novel, Soothing Music for Stray Cats, was shortlisted for the Peopleâ€™s Book Prize and is now cited in Greenâ€™s Dictionary of Slang. Her second novel, Perfect Architect, draws on her fascination for architecture and the desire to find the ideal home. She has just been awarded The Coracle Ireland Writerâ€™s Residency 2012 - A Sense of Place - in Wexford, Ireland.
Price Â£ 8.99 Paperback
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, I found it most uplifting and very cleverly humorous. I particularly liked reading about the architects' private worlds and thoughts, how they first encountered or experienced a love of architecture and how this developed.
Beautifully rendered, I loved the careful balance of letters with straight prose - intelligent storytelling, and how witty is this writer? Amazing. I heartily recommend.
This novel uses dark humour to great effect; skillful work and sophisticated prose. I look forward to more from this writer.
A very cleverly constructed novel, as though it is itself a building, and I loved the epistolary element. A triumph.
I love modern architecture, and this is a thrilling read about outlandish houses, love and super-egos! loved it!
Stunning prose. Brilliant structure. Moving and full of incredible wit.
This book is a great read. It's also hilarious at some points. Whatever your own home is like, I think everyone will enjoy the vicarious pleasure of having your dream home designed.
I found this so moving and yet at times so truly funny -
This novel is beautifully written; it's also full of real laugh out loud humour and it is also an absolute celebration of architecture - It is clever, funny and full of heart.
This would make a brilliant film also!
An intricately constructed, humorous and crafted novel: very engaging.
A beguiling and layered story that weaves together hearts and houses in order to turn what begins as a set of suspicions and setbacks into the affirmation of knowledge and love. Four architects are given a chance to design a new house for Gaia, the grieving widow of Charles, an internationally known architect himself. Coincidences and misunderstandings are resolved in unusual and moving ways, and in the end, I was moved to weep and laugh at the same time. I recommend this novel to anyone interested in contemporary architecture and to anyone who needs reminding that the human comedy sometimes is really funny.
I loved Soothing Music for Stray Cats (her first book) and this one is so different - and I am totally hooked!