Love Notes from a German Building Site
Publisher: Head of Zeus
Paul, a young Irish engineer, follows his girlfriend to Berlin and begins work on the renovation of a commercial building in Alexanderplatz. Wrestling with a new language, on a site running behind schedule, and with a relationship in flux, he becomes increasingly untethered.
Set against the structural evolution of a sprawling city, this meditation on language, memory and yearning is underpinned by the site's physical reality. As the narration explores the mind's fragile architecture, he begins to map his own strange geography through a series of notebooks, or 'Love notes'.
'In such a brutish and masculine atmosphere, Duncan's account is an unmasked ray of hope ... The prose is minimal, yet the ideas are maximal. If more men thought and wrote as tenderly and honestly as Adrian Duncan, we'd have stronger, sturdier novels and fewer garish monuments to consumerism' Irish Independent.