Ça raconte Sarah — Pauline Delabroy-Allard

An excellent Christmas present from my wonderful sister. All About Sarah is the story of two Parisien women who fall madly in love. From the start, we know it will end — abruptly and painfully.

The love is an all-consuming one that leaves little room for anything or anyone else, over time effectively reducing the narrator to nothing. She names no one other than Sarah, not even her daughter, or herself (the vast majority of sentences in the first part start with “Elle”). She always orders what Sarah’s having, drops everything in an instant to see her, and withstands her increasingly volatile, occasionally violent moods.

Everything is distilled through the presence or absence of Sarah. This reaches a crescendo in the second half, after the relationship ends, when we find out more about the narrator, as she takes a spontaneous, solo trip to Trieste, but even then it is only really about her grief for the love she has lost.

Of course, it’s a one-sided account of the relationship. But either way it’s a clever exposition of the lie we are sold — that an intense, passionate obsession is the height of romantic love.

Leave a Reply