'No matter what,' Julia had said, aware then of what was coming, 'let's always play cards.' And they did; for even with her memory gone, a little more of it each day her children taken, her house, her flowerbeds, belongings, clothes their games in the communal drawing room were a reality her affliction allowed.
A husband sits in Harry's Bar in Venice, thinking of his wife lost to him now whose plea has brought him back to one of their favourite haunts. On another table, a young couple quarrel. 'Cheating at Canasta' is the title story of William Trevor's new collection, his first since the highly acclaimed A Bit on the Side (2004), and its themes of missed opportunities, the inevitability of change and the powerful but fragmentary quality of our memories are entirely characteristic of his unparalleled oeuvre.