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.
In Arthur & George, Julian Barnes explores the grand tapestry of late-Victorian Britain to create his most intriguing and engrossing novel yet.
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A real tour de force from masterful author Julian Barnes is Arthur & George, which was short-listed for the 2005 Man Booker Prize. Late-Victorian Britain is brought to vivid life in the true story of the intersection of two lives: one an internationally famous author, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and the other, an obscure country lawyer, George Edalji, son of a Parsi Midlands vicar and a Scottish mother. They start out very differently. Arthur pursues a career in medicine before he discovers that he is really a writer; George, on his way to becoming a lawyer--near-sighted, timid and friendless--is victimized by locals because he is easy to scapegoat--a half-Indian in lily-white Great Wyrley.
The victimization of George takes the form of nasty letters, the theft of a school key, and finally, the accusation that he has mutilated animals. Meanwhile, Arthur is becoming more and more famous for creating Sherlock Holmes, whom he tries to kill off once and is forced to resurrect because of his fans' outcry. He marries, fathers two children and then, when his wife is invalided by consumption, falls madly in love for the first time with Jean Leckie.
The novel's style is smoothly revelatory. We slowly come to realize that George is half-Indian, that Arthur is the famous Doyle, that the woman he loves, chastely, is not his wife and, sadly, that George will not prevail over the forces ranged against him.
When George, desperate to resume his law career after imprisonment, sends Arthur the sad chronicle of his history, Arthur sees immediately that he could not be guilty and sets out to clear his name. This case of George's lifts Arthur from the slough of despond into which he has sunk after his wife, Touie, dies. He is guilt-ridden, constantly wondering if he was attentive enough, if she could possibly have known about Jean. Realizing the immense injustice George has suffered, he is shaken out of lethargy and, in Holmesian fashion, sets out to solve the case.
Julian Barnes is a gifted writer of enormous accomplishment. This novel is thoroughly engrossing, filled with Barnes's trademark themes of identity and love, longing and loss, and ultimately, an examination of man's inhumanity to man. --Valerie RyanAbout the Author:
DAVID EDGAR is best known for his adaptation of Nicholas Nickleby for the RSC, for whom he also wrote Destiny, Maydays, Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, Pentecost and The Prisoner’s Dilemma. His plays at the National include The Shape of the Table, Entertaining Strangers with Judi Dench, Albert Speer and Playing with Fire. His two most recent are Testing the Echo, which toured the UK in 2008, and A Time to Keep, a community play for Dorchester. His book How Plays Work was published by NHB in 2009. He lives in Birmingham.
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Book Description Vintage, 2007. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New Item. Item delivered via UPS in 7-9 business days. Tracking available by request. Bookseller Inventory # CCWW-13663-13664
Book Description Vintage. PAPERBACK. Book Condition: New. 1400097037 Never Read-may have light shelf or handling wear-has a price sticker or price written inside front or back cover-publishers mark-Good Copy- I ship FAST with FREE tracking!!. Bookseller Inventory # SKU000027768
Book Description Vintage, 2007. Book Condition: New. Brand New, Unread Copy in Perfect Condition. A+ Customer Service! Summary: Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, this bestselling novel explores the vast tapestry of late-Victorian Britain to create one of Barnes' most intriguing and engrossing novels yet. Bookseller Inventory # ABE_book_new_1400097037
Book Description Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2007. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New Book. Shipped from US. Bookseller Inventory # VR-9781400097036
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Book Description Vintage Books USA, United States, 2007. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Reprint. 201 x 127 mm. Language: English Brand New Book. 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. In Arthur George, Julian Barnes explores the grand tapestry of late-Victorian Britain to create his most intriguing and engrossing novel yet. Bookseller Inventory # ABZ9781400097036
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Book Description Vintage. PAPERBACK. Book Condition: New. 1400097037 Set against the backdrop of the British Empire, an intriguing novel by the author of Flaubert's Parrot chronicles the lives of two boys--George, the son of a Midlands vicar, and Arthur, growing up in Edinburgh--one who is forgotten by history, and one who becomes the creator of the world's most famous detective, as they pursue their separate destinies until they meet in a remarkable alliance. Reprint. 75,000 first printing. Bookseller Inventory # 4183076
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