Justine by Lawrence Durrell
In the first book of Durrell's Alexandria Quartet, the story of the mysterious and charismatic Justine is told by her lover, an impoverished Irish teacher who has sought refuge across the Mediterranean in Greece. It is a love story, but the real heroine of the book is its setting: the city of Alexandria, with a sky of 'hot nude pearl' and a thousand streets below, crowded, sensual and exotic; a complex and heady mix of elegance and poverty.
"Not merely prose buy poetry. The story is the least important aspect of the novel. It is the language. I have carried a copy throughout the world, vietnam, sierra leone, france, mexico, greece and the usa. I wouldn't want to be without it." - Amazon reviewer
"Not for everyone, that is for sure, but if you like a deeply intense drama that is like a mirage, this is for you. The structure and images are beautifully done. The monologue, which is 90% of the book, is very abstract, but creates an atmosphere that is pure magic. This book is the first in the Alexandrian Quartet and if you read Justine, you must read on and go to the next and the next and... you get the idea. They are truly addictive reading." - Amazon reviewer