Sarah Hoenicke talks to the author of All That’s Left to Tell, Daniel Lowe, for Wales Arts Review
We know that stories have lives of their own, independent of their tellers. They wind and shape themselves differently in hearers’ minds, and then come out slightly transformed in retellings. In Daniel Lowe’s fiction debut, All That’s Left to Tell, stories create life, hope, pain, and they bend the mind, as story itself is investigated by the book’s telescoping structure of a story within a story, within a story.
This is the tale of Marc Laurent, a Pepsi executive whose wife has just left him, and who decides to take on a six-month business stay in Karachi, Pakistan. We find out early that he’s been kidnapped, and that on top of his separation from his wife, his daughter, Claire, has been murdered. All of this feels overwhelming because it’s revealed in such quick succession, but then the book saves itself. Lowe’s real talents become apparent very quickly once one understands that the plot of the story is perhaps its least interesting facet.
The conversations between Marc and his interrogator, Josephine, propel the story, as she tries to extract information from him in order to better know to whom to send a ransom note. Rather than torture him as one would expect her to, she tells him the story of his murdered daughter’s future as Josephine imagines it. In doing so, she makes him care about his life again.
Continue reading the interview here.