The Last Enchantments is a powerfully moving and lyrically written novel. A young American embarks on a year at Oxford and has an impassioned affair that will change his life forever After graduating from Yale, William Baker, scion of an old line patrician family, goes to work in presidential politics. But when the campaign into which he's poured his heart ends in disappointment, he decides to leave New York behind, along with the devoted, ambitious, and well-connected woman he's been in love with for the last four years. Will expects nothing more than a year off before resuming the comfortable life he's always known, but he's soon caught up in a whirlwind of unexpected friendships and romantic entanglements that threaten his safe plans. As he explores the heady social world of Oxford, he becomes fast friends with Tom, his snobbish but affable flat mate; Anil, an Indian economist with a deep love for gangster rap; Anneliese, a German historian obsessed with photography; and Timmo, whose chief ambition is to become a reality television star. What he's least prepared for is Sophie, a witty, beautiful and enigmatic woman who makes him question everything he knows about himself. For readers who made a classic of Richard Yates's A Good School, Charles Finch's The Last Enchantments is a sweeping novel about love and loss that redefines what it means to grow up as an American in the twenty-first century.
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“Finch’s bittersweet novel holds a great deal of appeal. Any reader who has ever tried to carve out a life in a new place will connect easily with this tale of self-discovery, while anyone who has ever indulged in the melancholy of nostalgia will be right at home in this tale of past loves, old friends, and timeless memories. Finch’s prose is sure and moving, with flashes of brilliance as he pens a love story between people, but also to a place and a time that becomes as vital as any of the characters.”
RT Book Reviews (4 stars)