From bestselling author of “Boy Swallows Universe” and “All Our Shimmering Skies” comes the brilliant new non-fiction book “Love Stories”.
Using his journalistic flair and characteristic warmth, Trent Dalton has written a special work of non-fiction about the only thing we really need – love. Throughout 2021, he pounded city pavements and asked Australians from all walks of life one simple question, “can you please tell me a love story?” From here, the heartfelt, funny, and moving “Love Stories” was born. With reflections on lovers in parks, newlyweds in registry offices, people in bingo halls, and more – these stories demand to be read.
Exclusively for QBD Books, Trent describes how he felt about the response for the book:
Love is hard. Love is the easiest thing in the world and the toughest challenge we’ll ever face. Love is more mysterious than dark matter but just as pervasive. Love is not dead. Love is breathing. Love is more infectious than disease. Love is work. Love is leisure. Love can’t be bought and love can’t be owned but it can be kept and cherished and treasured and locked forever inside a human soul. Love is an equal opportunity phenomenon. The school lollipop lady has as much access to it as the millionaire defence lawyer and that’s so often why the lollipop lady is the happier of the two. Love is a thousand things and only one thing: everything. And love is every last member of the QBD reading community who has already found a little more room in their big, big heart for my latest book, Love Stories. Thank you from the bottom of my big fat cheeseball heart.
The whole idea was to raise a middle finger to two years of pandemic by writing something true and uncynical and deeply heartfelt and open about love and where 200 strangers might find themselves at with it in 2021.
The book started through a love story. A dear friend’s mum passed away on Christmas Day, 2020. In the parking lot at the memorial park after the funeral my dear friend gave me the greatest gift I think I’ve ever received: his mum’s sky blue Olivetti Studio 44 1960s typewriter. “She wanted you to have it,” he said. Weeks later, I phoned my friend and told him my plan to sit for weeks on end on the corner of Adelaide and Albert St, Brisbane, with the Olivetti typewriter, two chairs, a desk and a sign saying, “Sentimental writer collecting love stories. Do you have one to share?”
To my great surprise, I reckon about 200 people stopped to tell me their stories of love. I think it was maybe due to the fact we’ve all had two tough years. I think people just wanted to get away from thinking about the future and the uncertainty and all the things we might have missed out on through this pandemic. People really appreciated the chance to talk about all the things they have, the permanent things, the things set in stone. Most important among them: love.
I just wanted to send the deepest love and gratitude via the magic of this here blog to all the incredible book lovers in the QBD reading community who have found time for Love Stories in their busy lives and then found more time to let me know how much it meant to them. I have been incredibly moved and inspired by the response. People have finished the book and then felt moved enough to write to me about their own love story and these stories have been profound, vivid, funny, honest and soul-restoring. So many people have reached out wanting to send me their own love story, in fact, that I’ve actually established an email address – firstname.lastname@example.org – for anyone who wants to send me a love tale. I’ll read every one of them. Thanks for the time. Thanks for the support. And thanks for the love.