Through the Window: Seventeen Essays (and One Short Story)

Through the Window: Seventeen Essays (and One Short Story)

Paperback Vintage Books

By (author) Julian Barnes

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  • Publisher: VINTAGE
  • Format: Paperback | 256 pages
  • Dimensions: 128mm x 196mm x 22mm | 259g
  • Publication date: 1 November 2012
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0099578581
  • ISBN 13: 9780099578581
  • Sales rank: 70,903

Product description

In these seventeen essays (and one short story) the 2011 Man Booker Prize winner examines British, French and American writers who have meant most to him, as well as the cross-currents and overlappings of their different cultures. From the deceptiveness of Penelope Fitzgerald to the directness of Hemingway, from Kipling's view of France to the French view of Kipling, from the many translations of Madame Bovary to the fabulations of Ford Madox Ford, from the National Treasure Status of George Orwell to the despair of Michel Houellebecq, Julian Barnes considers what fiction is, and what it can do. As he writes in his preface, 'Novels tell us the most truth about life: what it is, how we live it, what it might be for, how we enjoy and value it, and how we lose it.' When his "Letters from London" came out in 1995, the "Financial Times" called him "our best essayist". This wise and deft collection confirms that judgment.

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Author information

Julian Barnes is the author of eleven novels, including The Sense of an Ending, which won the 2011 Man Booker Prize for Fiction. He has also written three books of short stories, Cross Channel, The Lemon Table and Pulse; and three collections of journalism, Letters from London, Something to Declare and The Pedant in the Kitchen. His latest book, Levels of Life was a Sunday Times Number One bestseller. He lives in London.

Review quote

"So elegant is Barnes' prose that it's easy to overlook his comic talents...this is Barnes cementing his reputation as a lively, curious reader as well as one of Britain's best living writers." -- Tom Cox Sunday Times, Books of the Year "Engaging, eloquent, entertaining and erudite... There is a capacious generosity throughout this book, and I would defy anyone not to leave without feeling both better informed and better disposed... It is rare indeed for a collection of occasional pieces such as this to inspire feelings of profound thankfulness." -- Stuart Kelly Scotsman "A truly wonderful collection." Sunday Times "The book relies on stylish intelligence and cool calm to accomplish its mastery. This is a coquettish book. Barnes flatters readers into feeling that they may be as shrewd, discriminating and attractive as he is." -- Richard Davenport-Hines Spectator "A devastatingly brilliant critic." -- Olivia Laing Prospect

Back cover copy

“Novels tell us the most truth about life: what it is, how we live it, what it might be for, how we enjoy and value it, how it goes wrong, and how we lose it. Novels speak to and from the mind, the heart, the eye, the genitals, the skin; the conscious and the subconscious. What it is to be an individual, what it means to be part of a society. What it means to be alone…”

Flap copy

In these seventeen essays (and one short story) the 2011 Man Booker Prize-winner examines British, French and American writers who have meant most to him, as well as the cross-currents and overlappings of their different cultures. From the deceptiveness of Penelope Fitzgerald to the directness of Hemingway, from Kipling’s view of France to the French view of Kipling, from the many translations of Madame Bovary to the fabulations of Ford Madox Ford, from the National Treasure status of George Orwell to the despair of Michel Houellebecq, Julian Barnes considers what fiction is, and what it can do. When his Letters from London came out in 1995, the Financial Times called him ‘our best essayist’. This wise and deft collection confirms that judgment.