“Possession” is a novel written by A. S. Byatt. It was published in 1990 and went on to win the Man Booker Prize for Fiction in the same year. The novel is a rich and complex work that combines elements of literary fiction, romance, and historical mystery.
The novel revolves around two contemporary academics, Roland Michell and Maud Bailey, who are researching the lives of two Victorian poets, Randolph Ash and Christabel LaMotte. The story unfolds as Roland discovers drafts of a letter written by Ash to LaMotte, suggesting a possible romantic connection between the two poets. This discovery leads to a literary and romantic mystery as Roland and Maud embark on a quest to uncover the truth about Ash and LaMotte’s relationship.
“Possession” is known for its intricate narrative structure, blending poetry, letters, and journal entries. It explores themes of love, passion, literary scholarship, and the complexities of human relationships. Byatt weaves together the Victorian and contemporary storylines, creating a compelling and intellectually engaging novel.
The novel has received acclaim for its literary merits, and it has been praised for its meticulous historical research and the vivid portrayal of its characters. “Possession” is often considered a masterpiece of postmodern literature, offering readers a multi-layered and thought-provoking narrative.