Brink, André. The Rights of Desire (New York: Harcourt, 2000) 311 p.
Ruben Olivier, a retired librarian in post-Apartheid Cape Town, lives alone with his books.
The deeply satisfying sublimation of traveling through the pages of books. Which never let you down, never say no, never offer a cold shoulder. And custom cannot stale their infinite variety, Oh, not that books are ‘easy’! They may be very demanding., they may play hard to get, they may not open themselves to exploration unless you’re prepared to offer everything in return. But if you do, how abundant the reward. Foreplay, fullplay, afterplay, endgame, all, the ultimate consummation devoutly to be wish’d. And then you dare to ask me what I do for sex? (p. 23).
Ruben has found a refuge in books ever since he was locked into a library overnight as a child. And more so since his wife died.
Ruben was forced to retire early from his job at The University of Cape Town in favor of a black replacement.