StrangersBook - 2009
'He was haunted by a feeling of invisibility, as if he were a mere spectator of his own life, with no one to identify him in the barren circumstances of the here and now.'
Paul Sturgis is a retired banker manager who lives alone in a dark little flat. He walks alone and dines alone, seeking out and taking pleasure in small exchanges with strangers- the cheerful Australian girl who cuts his hair, the lady at the dry cleaners. His only relative, and only acquaintance, is a widowed cousin by marriage - herself a virtual stranger - to whom he pays ritualistic visits on a Sunday afternoon. Trying to make sense of his current solitary state, and fearing that his destiny may be to die among strangers, Sturgis trawls through memories of his failed relationships and finds himself longing for companionship, or at the very least a conversation.
But then a chance encounter with a stranger - a recently divorced and demanding younger woman - shakes up his routine, and when an old girlfriend appears on the scene, Sturgis is forced to make a decision about how (and with whom) he wants to spend the rest of his days . . .