The Polyglot Lovers Lina Wolff
‘Do you have to stare like that?’ I asked. ‘Think about the actors in porn. They’ve got no problem showing themselves off.’ ‘Think about when I broke your nose,’ I replied.
Ellinor is thirty-six. She wears soft black sweatpants and a Michelin Man jacket. She fights. Smart and unsentimental, she tries her hand at online dating, only to be stranded by a snowstorm in Stockholm, far from her village in the south of Sweden. Ellinor finds herself at the heart of an intrigue involving an ex-wife who happens to be a blind medium, an overweight literary critic with a Houellebecq obsession, and a manuscript: a very important manuscript. Cut to Max Lamas, its author, who dreams of a polyglot lover, a woman who will understand him, in every tongue. His search takes him to Italy, where he befriends a marchesa on the brink of ruin, and where her granddaughter, Lucrezia, brings this tale to its final, shocking conclusion.
The Polyglot Lovers, winner of the 2016 August Prize, Sweden’s most prestigious literary prize, is a masterclass in comic plot and timing, as well as a delight for readers, thanks to Wolff’s trademark deadpan wit.