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Head of Zeus
Love Notes from a German Building Site
Love Notes from a German Building Site Adrian Duncan

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.

Head of Zeus * Fiction
03 Oct 2019 * 216pp * £4.99 * 9781789546231
REVIEWS
'Out of rather unusual material Adrian Duncan has crafted a quiet, beautifully written, intellectually provocative and compelling story, an assured blend of mastery and mystery'
Dublin Review of Books
'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
'Adrian Duncan's captivating debut. Written in a reflective tone that invites us to be as curious about the world as the book's narrator ... Duncan juxtaposes the personal with a marked curiosity about the world around him. There is a scrupulousness to his style of writing ... The book is at once a love note to a place, a job and a relationship, the layers of which come together with structural precision'
Irish Times
'Delicately observed and resonant'
Stinging Fly
'Duncan – Irish writer, artist and structural engineer – could not express himself more eloquently or masterfully in this stunning debut novel'
The Lady
'It's refreshing to read a work of fiction from an engineer's perspective ... The novel's richness comes from the way it evokes the experience of being a migrant worker, and from Paul's musings about the world as his sense of dislocation deepens'
Herald
'Love Notes from a German Building Site, Adrian Duncan's first novel, is written with such thrilling precision, such attention to detail, such care in the evocation of sensibility that you are fully transported into the world of a Berlin building site'
Guardian
'Duncan writes beautifully about cold weather, gruff manners, systems of hierarchy. He also writes beautifully about precious time off, or occasions when memory takes over'
Colm Tóibín, Irish Post
'A pitch-perfect debut by a writer who never relies on exaggeration or contrivance of any kind. This is a book that will live long in my memory both as an evocation of the marvellous ordinariness of romantic love, of the absurd politics of the workplace, and of the overlap between our construction of language and that of our built environment. Any author capable of writing a gripping scene about drilling holes in concrete is entitled to take a bow. I have not enjoyed a novel this much in a very long time'
Frank Shovlin, Irish Post
Author
Adrian Duncan
Adrian Duncan
Adrian Duncan is an Irish writer and artist based in Ireland and Berlin. He trained and worked as a structural engineer for over a decade, received his chartership from the Institute of Engineers Ireland in 2008 and later returned to university to study fine art. He has written a collection of short stories titled Chicken-Lane Manifesto.
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