In a captivating departure, Larry Watson, "a writer whose work is worthy of prizes" (Los Angeles Times Book Review), unveils a portrait of faith, obsession, and enduring love -- and a work of greater tenderness than anything he has yet written.
Love captures Paul Finley, in, of all places, his own bedroom -- literally waking him from his dreams. The night he discovers Laura Pettit standing at his windowsill, Paul is eleven years old, a boy naturally inclined toward seriousness, precociously adept at the art of watching the world without being watched. Laura is twenty-two, a fiercely passionate and independent poet already experiencing the first flickers of fame, a beautiful woman on the brink of seducing Paul's father. No matter; Paul is smitten. When she leaves him to rejoin the grown-ups' party downstairs, Laura issues Paul a wholly impossible command, one that will haunt and consume both of them for the rest of their lives: "Forget me."
Laying bare the inner life of one man during the course of nearly four decades, Larry Watson delivers a riveting treatise on the excruciating power of love -- and two of the most remarkable characters in recent American literature. Infused with breathtaking pathos and delicate grace, Laura is an extraordinary triumph of the novelist's art.