Matthew Quick — Love May Fail

This book is interesting to me as a writer because it is character driven with multiple first person point of view (POV). Very unusual. I tried writing a novel that way, years ago, but it didn’t work too well. Maybe I’ll try it again.

Each section of the book is a different POV, returning to the first POV for the last section.

First we meet Portia Kane (first POV), a woman leaving a twenty-year, unhappy marriage. She returns to her hometown where she hears that her high school teacher, Nate Vernon (second POV) —“Mr. Vernon,” Portia’s mentor— has left teaching and disappeared after being beaten by a student. She searches for him, wanting to save him and bring him back to teaching.

She crosses paths with Chuck Bass (third POV), who was also a student of the same teacher. He carries a card Mr. Vernon gave his students on the last day of his class, which reads “Official Member of the Human Race.” Chuck is a recovered drug addict who has turned his life around and is studying to be a teacher.

There is even a fourth POV slipped in between Nate Vernon and Chuck Bass. The late Sister Mauve Smith’s section is written in the form of letters to her son, Nate.

The story is full of coincidences or “God’s will” as Sister Mauve calls them. It was a good read, although I almost didn’t finish it after the first chapter.