The Sea, The Sea, Iris Murdoch
A man crafting his memoirs grows increasingly obsessed with his past, which more and more is his present. It was a hard read, and yet hard to look away, with reflections like this:
Can one change oneself? I doubt it. Or if there is any change it must be measured as the millionth part of a millimetre. When the poor ghosts have gone, what remains are ordinary obligations and ordinary interests. One can live quietly and try to do tiny good things and harm no one. I cannot think of any tiny good thing to do at the moment, but perhaps I shall think of one tomorrow.