So Lovers Dream
Publisher: Bloomsbury Reader
First published in 1931, this is not the only one of Alec Waugh's novels in which he has described the agonies of a couple who are desperately in love but cannot marry, for it is a situation that he has himself lived through. But it is in this novel that he has drawn most specifically upon experiences he has only alluded to in other books.
His protagonist is Gordon Carruthers, who was also the hero of The Loom of Youth, that then shocking and revelatory novel of public-school life. Now transformed into a globe-trotting writer, Carruthers falls in love with a beautiful American socialite, and eventually, while her husband is away, they begin an affair. For reasons that only gradually become clear, their situation seems to be a cul-de-sac, leading to a denouement that is both surprising and, paradoxically, the only possible one.
So Lovers Dream is an autobiographical novel in more ways than one. Into it Waugh put not only his love affair but his home, his literary agent, the details of his own life. This makes it both an enthralling tale and a candid self-revelation, and as always in this writer's work, an affectionate evocation of a time he has lived through.