(aka Dan Kavanagh, Edward Pygge)
[1946 - ]
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Barnes served as London correspondent for the New
Yorker between 1990-1995, writing a series of essays under the collective
title of "Letters from London". Gathered here, along with a few essays
published elsewhere, this collection constitutes Barnes's first published
book of non-fiction.
Cross Channel (1996)
A collection of short stories that explore the
connections, similarities, and differences between England and France.
Something to Declare: Essays on France (2002)
A collection of essays on the subject of France and
French culture written by Barnes over the previous twenty years. Subjects
include the Tour de France, French food, and, of course, Gustave Flaubert.
The Pedant in the Kitchen (2003)
A collection of essays on the preparation,
consumption, and enjoyment of food.
The Lemon Table (2004)
A collection of short stories on the nuances of life
and its insurmountable end.
Winner Somerset Maugham Award
for a first novel
This was Julian Barnes's first novel. It took
between 7-8 years to write and draws heavily on his personal experiences
growing up in the suburbs of London. Written in three parts, the first
section focuses on the friendship of Christopher and Toni and their
childhood disgust for the bourgeoisie. The second section finds
Christopher in Paris during les événements of 1968, where he misses out on
the events because he is too busy having sex. The last section outlines
Christopher's life back in the London suburbs, his marriage, his child,
and his stable job. When Toni returns to question Christopher's loss of
their early childhood philosophy, Christopher is faced with the dilemma of
turning his back on his wife and child or acknowledging that he has become
what he once despised.
Before She Met Me (1982)
Barnes's second book under his own name. Graham
Hendrick divorces, remarries, and finds himself consumed with jealousy as
he investigates his new wife's former love affairs. The novel is gritty,
shocking, and quite moving in its portrayal of the slow deterioration of
its central character.
Flaubert's Parrot (1984)
A kind of detective story, relating a cranky amateur scholar's search for
the truth about Gustave Flaubert, and the obsession of this detective
whose life seems to oddly mirror those of Flaubert's characters.
Staring at the Sun (1986) Barnes examines the ordinary life of Jean Serjeant
from her childhood in the 1920s through her adulthood to the year 2021.
Throughout her life, Jean learns to question the world's idea of truth
while she explores the beauty and miracles of everyday life.
A History of the World in 10½ Chapters (1989)
Connecting themes of voyage and discovery, History
has become one of Barnes's most studied and talked about novels. The
mixture of fictional and historical narratives provides Barnes the
opportunity to question our ideas of history, our interpretation of facts,
and our search for answers to explain our interaction and placement within
the grand scope of history
Talking It Over (1991)
The ostentatious Oliver falls in love with quiet
Gillian and wants to marry her. The problem? Gillian has already married
Oliver's best and oldest friend, the somewhat stale but stable Stuart.
Each character takes turns addressing the reader in this bright and funny
"he said/she said/he said" novel.
The Porcupine (1992)
With the collapse of Communism in Eastern Europe,
the deposed Party leader Stoyo Petkanov is standing trial for crimes
against his country. Unrepentant, Petkanov faces his chief prosecutor,
Peter Solinsky, questioning Solinsky's (and the country's) ideas of
history and nationalism.
England, England (1998)
Sir Jack Pitman creates a theme park on the Isle of
Wight that duplicates the tourist spots of England. Within easy walking
distance are replicas of Big Ben (half size), Princess Di's grave,
Harrods, Stonehenge, and the white cliffs of Dover. Martha Cochrane is
hired by Sir Jack as his official cynic. The novel follows her development
from childhood to retirement as a nation struggles to retain its cultural
identity. One of Barnes's finest and funniest novels, England, England
calls into question the idea of replicas, truth vs. fiction, reality vs.
art, nationhood, myth-making, and self-exploration.
Love, etc. (2000)
In Talking It Over, Stuart and Oliver fought for the
love of Gillian. One of them won, but what happened next? Love, etc
catches up with this trio after ten years only to find more chaos and
confusion. Written in the same style as the prequel, Barnes takes the form
a few steps further as the characters plead for the reader's attention.
Arthur and George (2005)
As boys, George, the son of a Midlands vicar, and Arthur, living in shabby
genteel Edinburgh, find themselves in a vast and complex world at the
heart of the British Empire. Years later—one struggling with his identity
in a world hostile to his ancestry, the other creating the world’s most
famous detective while in love with a woman who is not his wife–their
fates become inextricably connected.
Alphonse Daudet (1840-1897) was one of the most
popular nineteenth-century French novelists, whose work radiated humour
and good cheer. What few except those close to him knew was that for his
entire adult life he suffered from syphilis, a disease both unmentionable
and incurable at the time. What even fewer knew was that for the last
dozen years of his life he kept an intimate notebook in which he recorded
the inevitable development and terrifying effects of the disease. He
described the often alarming treatments he took in the desperate attempt
to defeat the disease, and wrote with comic zest about life in the
spa-towns to which he was sent for a cure. Even for a time when we are
more openly confessional about illness, Daudet remains exemplary and
instructive, both in his lucid self-examination and in his amused
stoicism. In the Land of Pain was first published by Daudet's widow in
Julian Barnes (2002) by Matthew Pateman
The Fiction of Julian Barnes: A Reader's Guide to Essential Criticism
(2006) by Vanessa Guignery
Writers on Howard Hodgkin (2006), Enrique Juncosa, ed.
Writers on Howard Hodgkin gathers together for the first time the
responses of major contemporary writers to the work of Howard Hodgkin.
Through the variety of voices it features and the range of literary
approaches they employ, this collection provides remarkable new insights
into Hodgkin’s work, as well as examples of some of the most incisive
writing on art published in recent years. Includes contributions by
Julian Barnes, Susan Sontag, and William Boyd
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