A Single Man, By Christopher Isherwood

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The Independent Culture

This classy 1964 novelette, republished to coincide with Tom Ford's new film, follows a day in the life of George, a 58-year-old Englishman living in California. Having lost his lover, Jim, in a car crash, George struggles to negotiate the demands of the day.

"Waking up begins with saying am and now... Every now is labelled with its date, rendering all past nows obsolete." Lunch at the college campus where he works is followed by drinks and an unexpected after-hours encounter.

George's memories of post-war abandon and surfside frolics are interspersed with the present, and "soft sad grey" skies provide the novel's palette.