One for My Baby by Tony Parsons

Published November 3, 2004

One for My Baby by Tony Parsons

Book info

  • Title One for My Baby
  • Author Tony Parsons
  • Year 2000
  • Genres Fiction, Romance, Contemporary

Returning to London from Hong Kong after a brief, idyllic marriage ends in tragedy, Alfie Budd finds his world collapsing. Believing his chance for love has passed, he takes comfort in fleeting affairs with his students at Churchill's Language School while watching his parents' marriage, his grandmother's health, and his career ambitions rapidly deteriorate. But then Alfie meets two people who help him to start healing: the old Chinese man he sees practicing Tai Chi in the park every morning and a single mother who needs Alfie's help in completing her education. Soon, our bereft widower is learning much more than Tai Chi and falling for one student above all others. But can Alfie give up meaningless sex for a meaningful relationship? And how much room in our hearts do we really have for love?


Alfie Budd lost his wife in a diving accident and struggles to come to terms with life without her. He leaves Hong Kong, finds himself at home with his sick mother and philandering father and a world of women he had never known.

The book is about grief, so it’s hard to really judge it for being a wallowing look at life, but that is just what it is. Alfie comes across as completely self-involved, which grief will only excuse so far. He won’t listen to his friends or anyone who tries to help him, and it’s hard to keep patient with his story.

The style of the story is a bit different to the other couple of books that Parsons has written, it flows better and I enjoyed that even if I didn’t like the protagonist as much. I think the jury is out for me on this one.

Rating: 2 / 5

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