BOOK REVIEW: ANDRÉ ACIMAN – FIND ME

Today, it’s another book review and it’s not massively a positive one, either. Today, it’s the new book, the sequel to Call Me By Your Name by André Aciman, Find Me.

It seems to be the year of a sequel! And Find Me has been waited for a long time by readers and fans of the book/movie. But first… what’s it about? Here’s the synopsis:

In Find Me, Aciman shows us Elio’s father, Samuel, on a trip from Florence to Rome to visit Elio, now a gifted classical pianist. A chance encounter on the train upends Sami’s visit and changes his life forever.

Elio soon moves to Paris, where he, too, has a consequential affair, while Oliver, a New England college professor with a family, suddenly finds himself contemplating a return trip across the Atlantic.

Aciman is a master of sensibility, of the intimate details and the nuances of emotion that are the substance of passion. Find Me brings us back inside the world of one of our greatest contemporary romances to show us that in fact true love never dies.

I came quite late to Call Me By Your Name. It’s one of those books that you see everywhere that you think you’ve already read it. I haven’t seen the movie either but have swooned over the cast on social media and seen a few clips here and there. So I thought I would give it a go – on a cold October day instead of reading it on a summer holiday in Italy. I thought I would enjoy the book as it is something I would usually like but I didn’t like it… at all. The language was pretentious and made me cringe a lot of the time. A lot of the book made me feel cold and there was something that just didn’t sit right with me. While being disappointed, I thought I would give Find Me a go, a second chance, if you will…

And interestingly (to me at least), I liked this book more than Call Me By Your Name. I thought the language was less pretentious and much more bearable and there were some great lines of dialogue and words on courage. I enjoyed looking at different aspects of love and relationships and exploring them in different aspects such as age. This book follows Elio’s father for the first chunk of the book and then we spend some time with Elio and a little bit of Oliver at the end of the book. This is where it falls flat for me. This isn’t a sequel of Call Me By Your Name and the relationship of Elio and Oliver. It’s barely anything there!

Which the title is ironic because you are literally trying to find anything in their relationship. *SPOILER*… it’s a rushed few pages at the end which makes the book seem a waste of time. I think fans of the book and their relationship will be disappointed immensely. Was the big fanfare because of the movie and the cult following that has created? Perhaps with The Testaments by Margaret Atwood, another big sequel this year, has a big following from the original book but also the TV adaptation which The Testaments uses certain characters and plot points but my point is that the The Testaments honours the TV adaptation and its characters but also giving a new life to a story whereas Find Me doesn’t do that at all – instead it’s just a few pages in the end – does this qualify as a sequel?

I think this book is better written than Call Me By Your Name – it felt more grown up, less pretentious but is this a sequel? I don’t think so, which is a shame as I really wanted to give it the benefit of the doubt. I just think André Aciman isn’t the author for me.

Have you read Find Me? What did you think? Let me know in the comments!

Thank you,

Corey.

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