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The Memory of Love - Aminatta Forna

The Memory of Love - Aminatta Forna

Title: The Memory of Love

Author:  Aminatta Forna

ISBN:  9781408808139

Weight:  990 g

Lined and publication dated signed first edition, first printing



Last 1 in stock, fast dispatch

Our price:  £30.00

The Memory of Love by Aminatta Forna

Adrian Lockheart is a psychologist escaping his life in England.  Arriving in Freetown in the wake of civil war, he struggles with the intensity of the heat, dirt and dust, and with the secrets this country hides.  Despite the gulf of experience and understanding between them, Adrian finds unexpected friendship in a young surgeon at the hospital, the charismatic Kai Mansaray, and begins to build a new life just as Kai makes plans to leave.

In the hospital Adrian encounters an elderly and unwell man, Elias Cole, who is reflecting on his past, not all of it noble.  Recorded in a series of notebooks are memories of his youth, the optimism of the first moon landings, and the details of an obsession: Saffia, a woman he loved, and Julius, her fiery, rebellious husband.

As their individual stories entwine across two generations in a country torn apart by repression and war, some distances cannot be bridged.

The Memory of Love is a towering tale of ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances, superbly realised and beautifully written, horrifying and exhilarating, unflinching and tender, moving and uplifting.  It is the story of four lives colliding; a story about friendship, about understanding, absolution and the indelible effects of the past; about journeys and dreams and loss, and about the very nature of love.

Peer & Press Reviews

[The Memory of Love] rarely addresses war directly, instead embedding it in every sentence.  By opening up a shared space for considering the past, Forna makes her world habitable again.

Jessica Loudis, San Francisco Chronicle

Forna weaves an intricate tapestry of betrayal, tragedy and loss; expertly drawing together the threads that link the sick old man, the brilliant doctor with dreams of leaving his troubled homeland, the wounded English psychologist and the young woman who links the three of them in a common bond of love.  Here she moves deftly between the enchantments of different narratives: the therapeutic, the confessional, the traumatic – flashbacks, nightmares, hauntings, fugue states where stories are lost or distorted beyond recognition and the sweetly joyous themes of new love, renewal, springing hope, second chances.


She threads her stories like music, imperceptibly into the reader’s consciousness.  One is left hauntingly familiar with the distant and alien; not quite able to distinguish the emotional spirits of fiction from the scars of real experience.

Sam Kiley, Times

Bibliographic Info

Attribute Details
Title The Memory of Love
Book Features
Edition / printing First edition, first printing
Overall condition Fine / Fine (see our article on Condition Grades)
Signed On the title page
Lined ‘Not love, but the memory of love.’
Dated 5 April 2010 [publication day]
Awards and Media
Awards and prizes

Commonwealth Writers’ Prize 2011 – winner (best book)

Orange Prize for Fiction 2011 – shortlist

Warwick Prize for Writing 2011 – shortlist

IMPAC Dublin Literary Award 2012 – shortlist

Media picks Selected as one of the Best Books of the Year by the Sunday Telegraph, Financial Times and Times newspapers and was a New York Times Editor’s Choice book.
Book Stats
Publisher Bloomsbury Publishing
Publication date
Printed by Clays Ltd, Bungay
ISBN 13 9781408808139
ISBN 10 1408808137
Format Hardcover with dust jacket
Pages 445
Size (h x w x d) 242 x 163 x 41mm
Packed weight 1.139kg [very heavy book]
Image and Design Credits
Author photograph Aminatta Forna
Jacket design Holly MacDonald
Jacket photograph Photodisc / Alamy

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