Two years on from the film adaptation of his novel “Call Me by your Name”, André Aciman published the much-anticipated sequel to his critically acclaimed book. "Call me by your Name” enjoys a cult-following of devoted fans who immerse themselves fully in the account of Elio, a young Italian Jewish boy who finds love in Oliver, a twenty-four-year-old philosophy graduate student from New Hampshire. 

Originally, I was nervous to start reading “Find Me” as I didn’t want the sequel to ruin my ardent opinion of “Call me by your Name”, however, Aciman exceeded my expectations to a great extent. There is a beautiful romanticism in the way in which Aciman describes human behavior in such a raw yet delicate manner, unlike any other author I have ever read prior. I feel that it is that certain delicacy that sets “Find Me” and Aciman’s writing apart from other authors of a similar genre.  

 I thought the first line of the book “Why so glum?” perfectly set the tone for the first chapter and the relationship between Samuel and Miranda, sensitive yet audacious, tender yet spritely. I feel as if the beginning of Samuel’s relationship with Miranda was so reminiscent of the passion that Elio, Samuel’s son, and Oliver had, however the circumstances were a far cry from the secret, youthful relationship that Elio and Oliver shared. The motives and intentions of Samuel and Miranda’s relationship were not elusive, unlike Elio and Oliver who were condemned to only that brief summer. Yet it is easy to compare these two relationships as being separate however they are intertwined, they mirror and contrast each other in every turn yet they both come back to one feeling: love and its many expressions.  

Although I enjoyed reading about the sensitivity between Samuel and Miranda I would have preferred the focus directed more towards Elio and his various relationships. Despite this, I felt it was correct of Aciman to concentrate a chapter on Samuel and Miranda I simply thought that they were rather overshadowed throughout the rest of the book. I believe that it was very regardful of Aciman to reintroduce the character of Elio in this chapter along with his father and Miranda because not only did it give the reader a chance to reacquaint themselves with his character, but it also gave a glimpse into his development from a teenager to a now self-sufficient, independent adult yet someone who still possessed some of his unfeigned childhood innocence to which readers of “Call Me by your Name” had become so accustomed to.  

The second of the four chapters, Cadenza, was my favourite by far; the first line “You’re blushing”, said by Michel to Elio, mirrors the playful sensitivity of the first line of the book, shared between Samuel and Miranda. I feel that playfully sensitive is a good way to describe the general tone and atmosphere throughout the book, which it leaves the reader yearning to return to that sensitivity felt once they have laid the book down. In many respects that longing is felt also by the main characters, not because they have not found love but because they feel so safe and secure that they are wary of how long it can be sustained.  

Michel and Elio were fairly contrasting in their personalities: Michel assertive and Elio reserved, yet they shared many things one of which was the love of classical music. Elio, being a classical pianist, achieved what Michel’s father longed yet failed to achieve; both Michel and Elio are enamored by the mystery behind Michel’s father’s past which brings them ever closer together. Their initial shyness is soon dissipated when they find the common ground of Michel’s father as they share exploring the unknown together. The intimacy between Michel and Elio is one that Elio had only felt with Oliver before but this time there was nothing to hide, no anxiety that Michel had to leave.  

For me the last chapter brought “Call Me by your Name” and “Find Me” to a fulfilling close, even though there was great sadness in Samuel dying it had brought Elio and Oliver back together. Although it was upsetting that Samuel was no more, I did not feel so distraught because he had lived a full and happy life, what more could one want? Samuel had two adoring sons Elio and Ollie, his child with Miranda, and although he had left behind his wife and children it meant that they could now look after each other always holding within them his memory. I felt an all-encompassing sense of contentment at the end of the book, safe in the knowledge that Elio and Oliver were a family at last with Ollie as their child: “The child was like our child, and seemed so emphatically prophesied that everything suddenly became clear to me.”  

By Lucia Grace Gambino.