The Loss Adjustor
I've just finished reading The Loss Adjustor, by Aifric Campbell. Born in Ireland, as a young woman Campbell moved to Sweden where she studied and taught linguistics. So why she then went into London banking for 17 years poses a question. Money, probably. But in The Loss Adjustor it's words that matter - Campbell excels in two things that make a great novel - pace and description. The Loss Adjustor is Caro, or Caroline. She works in the city, anonymously and without fuss. The reader is brought back to Caro's childhood days, when her neighbours, Cornac and Estelle, are her best friends and substitute siblings. 35 year old Caro harbours a loss that is teasingly and expertly revealed, revelling in and then quickly but not thoughtlessly smashing the fantasy that Caro lives in the grip of. The past runs parallel with the present, but the future does not feel it is a prospect until she gets to know and befriend the elderly Tom Warren, who harbours his own, thankfully and realistically irreconcilable, regrets and losses. It is a moving story, with hints of Plath's The Bell Jar. It is her second novel, her debut being the widely praised The Semantics of Murder, which I have on my to read pile. The title hints to the drawing of her linguistic past. I have just started on Tove Jansson's novel The True Deceiver. More anon.