By Martin Amis
(Vintage Books USA, Paperback, 9780099488736)
Publication Date: March 2011
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The year is 1970, and the youth of Europe are in the ecstatic throes of the sexual revolution. Though dedicated to the cause they have yet to realize this disturbing truth: that between the death of one social order and the birth of another, there exists a state of terrifying purgatory--or, as Alexander Herzen put it, a pregnant widow.
Twenty years old and on vacation from college, Keith and an assortment of his peers are spending the long, hot summer in a castle in Italy. The tragicomedy of manners that ensues will have an indelible effect on all its participants, and we witness, too, how it shapes Keith's subsequent love life for decades.
Bitingly funny, full of wit and pathos, The Pregnant Widow is a trenchant portrait of young lives being carried away on a sea of change.