Paris, 1958. Ralf is alone, filling his days with glasses of red wine at Jacques’ bar, waiting for life to happen to him. Then, one night, Elsa – bold, enigmatic, unpredictable – whirls into Jacques’ bar and into Ralf’s world, knocking him out of his cautious routine and into a life full of spontaneity and excitement.
But Elsa is hiding something. As Ralf falls deeper in love, he reveals more of his past – his childhood in Nazi Germany, his time in a British tank division at the end of the Second World War. But what is Elsa hiding? And can their love survive it?
Let Us Be True charts the lives of these two extraordinary characters through an era of great uncertainty, from the war and its aftermath through to the deadly unrest of 1960s Paris. Evocative, charismatic and sweeping in scope, Alex Christofi’s second novel is a moving story of love and loss, of the things we hide from ourselves and from others, and of the personal cost of Europe’s turbulent twentieth century.
* Bookshop is a new site which supports authors and independent book shops so I receive more money if you buy the book there.
A wonderful, moving love story … Christofi belongs to the school of Julian Barnes … He has an acute sense of narrative and stylistic decorum. Nothing outrageous or soppy: emotions derive from the quiet, understated accumulation of events. Let Us Be True is only Christofi’s second novel. It’s tender and sensitively written with a powerful feeling for the passage of time. – James Marriott, The Times
The reader is sucked into Christofi’s prose, a prisoner to his wit and imagination. – Jonny Sweet, The Skinny
A blazing novel about identity, love, kindness, loss and survival in an uncertain world. Let Us Be True will stay with me for a long time – Rachel Joyce
It’s also published in Greek, if you read Greek.