Sunday, March 22, 2009

Nothing To Be Frightened Of (Vintage Paperback)

'I don't believe in God, but I miss him.' Julian Barnes' Nothing To Be Frightened Of is, among many things, a family memoir, an exchange with his brother (a philosopher), a meditation on mortality and the fear of death, a celebration of art, an argument with and about God, and a homage to the French writer Jules Renard. Though he warns us that 'this is not my autobiography', the result is like a tour of the mind of one of our most brilliant writers.

When Angela Carter reviewed Barnes's first novel, Metroland, she praised the mature way he wrote about death. Now, nearly thirty years later, he returns to the subject in a wise, funny and constantly surprising book, which defies category and classification – except as Barnesian.

Vintage paperback edition is now available from the Vintage website or Amazon.co.uk. The American edition is available from Knopf and the Canadian from Random House Canada. Order your copy online via Amazon.com, Knopf, Amazon.co.uk, Random House, Amazon.ca, or one of a number of local independent booksellers.

Read the first chapter online at the New York Times website.

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2 Comments:

At 14 June, 2009 22:43, Anonymous Kate Kinns said...

I have not enjoyed a book as much as this for many years. My husband died 6 months ago - he was unafraid of death (though didn't know much after the 25,000 volts that got him), or indeed, afraid of much - skydiving, bungee jumping, kart racing... his absence of fear made his death no less tragic, but left us all thinking about our own response to the end of being. With this book I laugh, cry, ponder and enjoy the process greatly. Thanks so much Mr Barnes for your delightful narrative.

 
At 05 November, 2009 19:36, Anonymous Anonymous said...

A few days ago I started reading "Nothing To Be Frightened of". Today there is an item on the radio about a Requiem to be written by an Belgian composer, working together with pupils of different schools in Brussels. Comment of a 10 year old boy : " When I think about dying, I'm afraid; but I'm also glad because once I'm dead, I won't be afraid of dying."

 

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