Lennie Less is a saxophonist, a well-known jazz musician in the U.K. with lots of fans and lots of credits, who is apparently afraid of everything. Jim Crace presents this quirky, bumpy portrait as its hero lives through the very eventful week in which he turns 50. The narrative contains a highly individual, detailed, and sometimes trying progress to a nevertheless rewarding denouement.
Mr. Crace constructs Lennie Less of not-very-stern stuff at the outset of his story. And the character's whining and prevarication wore me down a bit. I always returned, however, to take up the story, and now I'm very glad I did. The hero becomes more sensible and more admirable as the book progresses and his family, his admirers, even his legion of fans, grows as a result. Mr. Crace has clearly gained a fan in me. His hero's multi-faceted character reflects a mature, confident author, and an extreme talent at structuring a story. Pick up "All That Follows" and meet the author and his memorable creation.