A group of British expatriates meet for their weekly Alcoholics Anonymous meeting in Rome. At first the drama is low-key, little more than the nervous chatter of dry-drunks and their less disciplined colleagues. Literary spirits weigh heavily on the characters’ sodden efforts to hold together lives that have cracked like old plates. Kate, a former bestselling author, invites a young Englishman wrongly acquitted of murder to stay with her so that she can write a book about him. Her recklessness ends in a fresh killing that the AA members must collude in covering up. But the lurid plot is mostly just a balance for much softer, sadder apprehensions of common disappointment and ageing. Alcoholism, like writing, is a lonely business.
Author Allan Massie is truly a man of letters in a way few others are. Primarily noted for his historical fiction he is an equally accomplished biographer, anthologist, book reviewer and columnist, and has written on everything from rugby to health care.
So we’re delighted that he will be joining us for an Edinburgh Reads event in Central Library on Thursday 30th May, where he will be discussing “Surviving” with “Redlegs” author Chris Dolan. As ever, you can book a free ticket online but you will have to be quick!