Sebastian (Durrell novel)

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First edition
Author Lawrence Durrell
Country United Kingdom
Language English
Series The Avignon Quintet
Publisher Faber & Faber
Publication date
Media type Print (Paperback and Hardback)
Pages 202 pp
ISBN 0-14-007705-7
OCLC 11649588
823/.912 19
LC Class PR6007.U76 S4 1985
Preceded by Constance
Followed by Quinx

Sebastian, published in 1983 and sub-titled Ruling Passions, is the fourth volume in The Avignon Quintet series by British author Lawrence Durrell. Set mainly in Switzerland immediately after World War II, the novel continues the story of Constance and the Gnostic cult begun in Monsieur.

The mix up over the letter informing Affad of his forthcoming death has caused major ructions within the Gnostic sect, and he is called back to Egypt for admonishment. Before leaving, however, he has asked Constance to use her psychiatric skills to treat his son, who has become autistic, a task in which she is gradually successful. After Affad's return their relationship continues, but it is brought to an abrupt end by the psychopath Mnemidis, who has escaped from the institution where Constance works, and who goes to Constance's flat with a view to killing her, but kills Affad instead. The book finishes in surreal manner as Affad seems virtually to disappear from Constance's memory, two chapters give conflicting accounts of Constance's action upon the death of Constance's boss Schwartz, and unexpectedly Sylvie makes a first reappearance since Monsieur (another character who is supposedly a fictional creation of Blandford) and begins an affair with Constance.

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