Wednesday 17 January 2024

Wells, Benedict "The End of Loneliness"

Wells, Benedict "The End of Loneliness" (German: Vom Ende der Einsamkeit) - 2016

A quiet book about a family that suddenly isn't a family anymore. How do children cope with the death of their parents, how do they get on?

In this story we can see what happens next.
Or not. How this loss accompanies a child throughout their entire life, how it shapes their life.

After the death of their parents, the children grow up in a boarding school, which is also described very impressively.
Here the author probably drew on his own experiences, as he too was at boarding school at the age of six.

This is a fabulous book that captures all facets of an entire life (or several).
Wonderfully written, a fascinating family story that is so comprehensive despite only being just over 350 pages long. Terrific. 

I think I will read more from this young author.

From the back cover:

"Jules Moreau’s childhood is shattered after the sudden death of his parents. Enrolled in boarding school where he and his siblings, Marty and Liz, are forced to live apart, the once vivacious and fearless Jules retreats inward, preferring to live within his memories - until he meets Alva, a kindred soul caught in her own grief. Fifteen years pass and the siblings remain strangers to one another, bound by tragedy and struggling to recover the family they once were. Jules, still adrift, is anchored only by his desires to be a writer and to reunite with Alva, who turned her back on their friendship on the precipice of it becoming more, but just as it seems they can make amends for time wasted, invisible forces - whether fate or chance - intervene.

A kaleidoscopic family saga told through the fractured lives of the three Moreau siblings alongside a faltering, recovering love story, The End of Loneliness is a stunning meditation on the power of our memories, of what can be lost and what can never be let go. With inimitable compassion and luminous, affecting prose, Benedict Wells contends with what it means to find a way through life, while never giving up hope you will find someone to go with you

"The End of Loneliness" has been chosen favourite book of the year 2016 by the German Indepent Book Shops and received the European Union Prize for Literature.


  1. I just left a comment about this topic on your German blog :).

    1. Thanks. I don't go there that often, as you might have noticed, just try to add German reviews for the friends who don't speak English or the German books that have not been translated.