Moving from 1960s Moscow through India and Venice to 1990s Sydney, Canberra–based Punjabi author Subhash Jaireth’s latest novel tells the story of Indian engineer Vasu and Russian cellist Anna’s ultimately doomed relationship. We know it’s doomed from the first page when Vasu, recalling their first meeting, says: “I wish it hadn’t happened .” Switching deftly between Anna and Vasu’s first-person viewpoints, featuring a strong supporting cast and set against a backdrop of social political upheaval, After Love is a haunting, delicately textured tale of love gone wrong and the right that can come of it. Superb.
William Yeoman, The West Australian 24-25 August 2013
Jaireth is a poet and autobiographer whose debut novel is about an unusual clash of cultures. Vasu is Indian, studying in Moscow in the 1960s. He falls in love with Anna, a Russian cellist. He is idealistic; life under Communism has made her realistic. The barriers against their love are great. They try to compromise by his not returning to India, but in Venice, she deserts him. Years later, they meet again. Subtle and affecting.
Lucy Sussex, Melbourne Age, The Examiner, Goulburn Post, Newcastle Herald, The Guardian, South Coast Register, Central Western Daily, Yass Tribune November 2012
Languid and sad, this story of fated lovers slowly and inexorably gets under your skin.
Diane Dempsey, The Age, Canberra Times, Sydney Morning Herald December 22, 2012
It is a very rich and intricate novel, deceptively measured on the surface, but harbouring immense emotional tension and passion. I hope that this beautiful book is made available to readers outside of Australia, because it adds a unique voice and style to contemporary South Asian writing.
Elen Turner, South Asia Book Blog 17 December 2012
The theme of love, the challenges that it represents, with the binding of two people’s needs, desires and beliefs, is written within the pages of this novel. After Love captures the disappointment and discontent that can sometimes affect relationships after the glow of new love fades. It is about what you can discover about yourself and the world once love dissipates.
Leanne Weymans, M/C Reviews 3 February 2013 www.media-culture.org.au