We first, for instance, receive her philosophy about her home library, which seems marvellous and considered.
“As you will see, I no longer organize my books alphabetically, or arrange them by colour of spine, which was what I used to do. Now the books are arranged according to which characters I believe ought to be talking to each other. That’s why Heart of Darkness is next to Le Regard du Roi, and Wide Sargasso Sea sits directly above Jane Eyre. The latter used to sit next to each other but then I thought it best to redress the old colonial imbalance and give Rhys the upper hand – upper shelf.”
But when a younger friend visits Moraya’s apartment in her absence, she views the place as being in disarray and comments on the fact that the two women had spent time not long ago to painstakingly alphabetize her entire collection and now books are scattered everywhere and shelved erratically, some with their spines facing the back of the shelf and others damaged and the collection in turmoil.
Being both within and without Moraya’s perspective offers readers her company and a view on her friends’ and acquaintances’ relationships with her which, in a very slim volume, leaves us both feeling included and feeling as though we’d like to know her better.