The Sense of an Ending
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The Sense of an Ending

3.69 (108,859 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

Winner of the Man Booker Prize for Fiction. Now a major film starring Jim Broadbent and Charlotte Rampling. Tony Webster and his clique first met Adrian Finn at school. Sex-hungry and book-hungry, they would navigate the girl-less sixth form together, trading in affectations, in-jokes, rumour and wit. Maybe Adrian was a little more serious than the others, certainly more intelligent, but they all swore to stay friends for life. Now Tony is retired. He's had a career and a single marriage, a calm divorce. He's certainly never tried to hurt anybody. Memory, though, is imperfect. It can always throw up surprises, as a lawyer's letter is about to prove. "A masterpiece". (Daily Telegraph). "Mesmerising". (Independent). "Wonderful". (Irish Times).show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 160 pages
  • 128 x 196 x 14mm | 99.79g
  • Vintage Publishing
  • VINTAGE
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0099564971
  • 9780099564973
  • 27,329

Review quote

"A masterpiece... I would urge you to read - and re-read - The Sense of an Ending" Daily Telegraph "Mesmerising... the concluding scenes grip like a thriller - a whodunit of memory and morality" Independent "A very fine book, skilfully plotted, boldly conceived... Barnes has achieved...something of universal importance" -- Justin Cartwright Observer "A precise, poignant portrait of the costs and benefits of time passing, of friendship, of love. A small masterpiece" -- Erica Wagner The Times "A wonderful story that is all too human and all so real" Irish Timesshow more

About Julian Barnes

Julian Barnes is the author of twelve 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; four collections of essays; and two books of non-fiction, Nothing to be Frightened Of and the Sunday Times Number One bestseller Levels of Life. He lives in London.show more

Review Text

"Mesmerising... the concluding scenes grip like a thriller - a whodunit of memory and morality"show more

Back cover copy

'A masterpiece... I would urge you to read - and re-read - The Sense of an Ending' Daily Telegraph Tony Webster and his clique first met Adrian Finn at school. Sex-hungry and book-hungry, they would navigate the girl-less sixth form together, trading in affectations, in-jokes, rumour and wit. Maybe Adrian was a little more serious than the others, certainly more intelligent, but they all swore to stay friends for life. Now Tony is retired. He's had a career and a single marriage, a calm divorce. He's certainly never tried to hurt anybody. Memory, though, is imperfect. It can always throw up surprises, as a lawyer's letter is about to prove. 'Mesmerising... the concluding scenes grip like a thriller - a whodunit of memory and morality' Independent 'A very fine book, skilfully plotted, boldly conceived... Barnes has achieved...something of universal importance' Justin Cartwright, Observer 'A precise, poignant portrait of the costs and benefits of time passing, of friendship, of love. A small masterpiece' Erica Wagner, The Timesshow more

Flap copy

'A dexterously crafted narrative...quivering not just with tension but with psychological, emotional and moral reverberation...overlaid with witty portrayal of the contemporary London scene and spot-on period evocation in harkings back to the class and sexual mores of the early 1960s... Uncovering, link by link, an appalling chain reaction of briefly wished-for revenge, almost accidental damage, and remorse that agonisingly bites after most of a lifetime, it's a harsh tale rich in humane resonances' Sunday Times 'Like Henry James's The Turn of the Screw, which it resembles...its effect is disturbing - all the more so for being written with Barnes's habitual lucidity. His reputation will surely be enhanced by this book. Do not be misled by its brevity. Its mystery is as deeply embedded as the most archaic of memories' Anita Brookner, Daily Telegraph 'Without overstating his case in the slightest, Barnes's story is a meditation on the unreliability and falsity of memory; on not getting it the first time round - and possibly not even the second, either. Barnes's revelation is richly ambiguous... It subverts not only the conventions of the where-are-the-snows-of-yesteryear fiction...but also the redeemed-lonely-old-man novel...and also the very notion that towards the end of our lives we see things more clearly' Evening Standardshow more

Rating details

108,859 ratings
3.69 out of 5 stars
5 22% (23,870)
4 40% (43,163)
3 27% (29,590)
2 9% (9,434)
1 3% (2,802)

Our customer reviews

This is a great read, short but kept my interest. Its hard to work out whether I like the main character or think he is a bit of a git who played it 'safe' all his life.show more
by Allyson A
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