We have Axl and Beatrice, a devoted elderly couple, ancient Britons who have lived amongst Saxons for almost as long as they can remember, decide to set off to search for a long-lost son who lives they know not where. Somehow, they will find him. Along the way they encounter Sir Gawain of the Green Knight, various young people, several older people and a few religious types. Sword-wielding warriors play their part, as do various ogres, pixies and a dragon. One monster turns out to be a dog. A dog? With how many heads, how many eyes, and does it live up a donkey's arse?
Sorry to sound cynical, but if this book is really about the loving relation ship between the elderly couple, or indeed something related to the inevitable passing of time, then it is doubly unsuccessful. Rarely have I been so disappointed by a book from an author who can actually write.
Perhaps Isiguro suffered from writer's block, and this was his way of overcoming the problem. His wife, apparently, recommended the first draft for the bin. A woman of taste. Fantasy, it seems to me, is always an excuse for lack of imagination. How many legs shall the beast have? And just how I'll-defined do you want the threat? How many clichés can you take?
It is only my opinion. But it was a true waste of time.