Sunday, June 7, 2015

P.S. by Helen Schulman

A ghost engenders lust in a nearly middle-aged woman

Louise Harrington, admissions coordinator for a graduate art program at Columbia, feeling old and dried up, gets a second chance at love. A folder lands on her university desk -- the applicant, F. Scott, is apparently the doppelganger of her tragically killed high school boyfriend, Scott. Should she investigate further? She certainly does.

I don’t think this was really my cup of tea. The story didn’t hook me. The stakes were too low and the whimsical tone grated. Although I enjoyed the prose and the dialogue. The characters were all depicted distinctly, each with his own quirky flaw. The plot was a little like a Twilight Zone episode, although for me, the story fell apart at the end. I began to get anxious in the last third – how was Schulman going to wrap this up? Is F. Scott the posthumous baby, the reanimated corpse, the extreme coincidence, the cloning experiment? The plot is not on the realist plane (though everything else is), but that question fatally distracted me.

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