With love the sea, Pascal Quignard takes up the obsessions that run through his work to bring them to a high degree of incandescence. It returns to the form of the novel and it is an enchantment. Around 1650, in a northern Europe devastated by the wars of power and religion, slings, robbery, rapes, epidemics, musicians go, from a patron to a prince, from a post of organist to a teaching load. We’ve known these solitaries since All the mornings of the world (Gallimard, 1991) where Sainte-Colombe and Marin Marais had already appeared. To love and the sea are linked music and death. These four themes wrap around each other to compose a work that is itself musical, with its breaks in rhythm, its typical phrasing, its enumerations, its archaisms. It draws you into the flow of a dreamy narrative that insinuates itself into the thoughts of the characters – fluctuating from past to present to within the sentence.