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A Profound and Provocative Debut

Leicester-based author Greg Scorzo shares insights into his debut novel, Love Before Covid, a hard-hitting work of philosophical fiction that delves into themes such as mental health, sexual freedom, parental consent, gender identity, and, ultimately, conditional and unconditional love.

Dark, intense, and emotionally charged, Greg’s book compels the reader to explore a series of intriguing and complicated relationships: a lesbian couple grappling with the decision to have children, a successful porn star facing judgment for her life choices, and a man entangled in a relationship with a clinical psychopath.

It’s an interesting and eye-opening read — a bold and daring book that offers a banquet of food for thought.
Readers are left to decide if there are any heroes or villains in the story, which is primarily conveyed through
dialogue — heated exchanges between central characters as they navigate their relationships and various life
dilemmas.

“It’s almost like eavesdropping on these conversations, even though you haven’t officially been invited into the room,” says Greg. “There’s a gossipy feel – mischievous and intense, where you experience the pathology and pathos of relationships. Yet, you’re also encouraged to contemplate the philosophical nature of these
arguments.

“The book prompts the reader to think deeply about uncomfortable topics they might want to avoid —
subjects associated with hurt, pain, or embarrassment,” he adds.
“It’s a very relatable book with conflicts, arguments, and vicious insults we’ve all encountered, but it allows us to think deeply about these things rather than dismiss them.”

The central character is Joe Pastorious, a Leicester-based poet who ends his relationship with his girlfriend after she is diagnosed as a psychopath.

“The paradox is that Janet is quite a good girlfriend despite being a psychopath,” explains Greg. “Joe’s
second girlfriend, a ‘normal,’ beautiful and successful dance instructor, is also quite cruel to him.

“The story revolves around Janet’s return to Joe’s life, attempting to convince him to leave his current girlfriend and return to her. At its core, the narrative explores conditional versus unconditional love and how a mental health diagnosis should impact a relationship.”

The second story in Love Before Covid revolves around a lesbian couple debating whether to have children.
Alice accuses Eve of being deficient for not wanting children, touching on complex issues such as consent around
becoming a parent.

“There’s a lot of education around sexual consent, but there’s very little interest in the culture at the moment
about consent when it comes to becoming a parent,” Greg points out.
“I wanted to address issues that other philosophers haven’t touched on or don’t take
seriously.”

The third story in the novel is equally raw and provocative. It focuses on a successful porn star reconnecting with
her best friend after many years. Lena, now a successful author, discovers the unexpected direction Davis’s life has taken, leading to a philosophical discussion about sexual freedom and the implications of being a sex worker, especially as a parent.

All three stories immerse the reader as voyeurs — flies on the wall of rooms filled with challenging yet utterly
fascinating conversations. The rooms are uncomfortable, thick with toxicity and tension, yet you don’t want to
leave.

Greg, with a deep interest in philosophy and a PhD in the subject since 2011, aims to bring philosophical
thinking outside of academia in creative and original ways.

“I wanted to write a philosophical book of dialogues, but I didn’t want to adopt the style of a traditional philosophy book, so I wrote a fiction one instead,” he told Pukaar.

“I love the idea of a piece of writing that is simultaneously a work of fiction and a kind of philosophical thought experiment. This book poses many questions to the reader without providing answers, encouraging them to think and emote for themselves.
“So far, the reaction has been great. I haven’t heard from anyone who has read the book and hasn’t had a lot to say about it, so that to me is a huge success.”


Visit www.troubador.co.uk/bookshop/contemporary/love-before-covid for updates.