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Barney's Version

Richler, Mordecai

ISBN 10: 067940418X / ISBN 13: 9780679404187
Published by Knopf, 1997
Condition: As New Hardcover
From Northmont Books and Stamps (Farmington Hills., MI, U.S.A.)

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A very fine copy. This wonderful novel was made into a very fine movie. Size: 6x9. Bookseller Inventory # 001514

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Barney's Version

Publisher: Knopf

Publication Date: 1997

Binding: Hard Cover

Book Condition:As New

Dust Jacket Condition: As New

Edition: First Edition.

About this title

Synopsis:

Charged with comic energy and a steely disregard for any pieties whatsoever, Barney's Version is a major Richler novel, the most personal and feeling book of a long and distinguished career.

Told in the first person, it gives us the life (and what a life!) of Barney Panofsky--whose trashy TV company, Totally Useless Productions, has made him a small fortune; whose three wives include a martyred feminist icon, a quintessential JCP (Jewish-Canadian Princess), and the incomparable Miriam, the perfect wife, lover, and mother--alas, now married to another man; who recalls with nostalgia and pain his young manhood in the Paris of the early fifties, and his lifelong passion for wine, women, and the Montreal Canadiens; who either did or didn't murder his best friend, Boogie, after discovering him in bed with The Second Mrs. Panofsky; whose satirical eye for the idiocies of today's Quebec separatists (as well as for every other kind of political correctness) manages to offend his entire acquaintanceship (and will soon be offending readers everywhere); and whose memory--though not his bile--is, in his sixty-seventh year, definitely slipping . . .

Review:

Barney Panofsky smokes too many cigars, drinks too much whiskey and is obsessed with two things: the Montreal Canadiens hockey team and his ex-wife Miriam. An acquaintance from his youthful years in Paris, Terry McIver, is about to publish his autobiography. In its pages he accuses Barney of an assortment of sins, including murder. It's time, Barney decides, to present the world with his own version of events. Barney's Version is his memoir, a rambling, digressive rant, full of revisions and factual errors (corrected in footnotes written by his son) and enough insults for everyone, particularly vegetarians and Quebec separatists.

But Barney does get around to telling his life story, a desperately funny but sad series of bungled relationships. His first wife, an artist and poet, commits suicide and becomes--à la Sylvia Plath--a feminist icon, and Barney is widely reviled for goading her toward death, if not actually murdering her. He marries the second Mrs Panofsky, whom he calls a "Jewish- Canadian Princess", as an antidote to the first; it turns out to be a horrible mistake. The third, "Miriam, my heart's desire", is quite possibly his soul mate, but Barney botches this one too. It's painful to watch him ruin everything, and even more painful to bear witness to his deteriorating memory. The mystery at the heart of Barney's story--did he or did he not kill his friend Boogie?--provides enough forward momentum to propel the reader through endless digressions, all three wives, and every one of Barney's nearly heartbreaking episodes of forgetfulness. Barney's Version, winner of Canada's 1997 Giller Prize, is Richler's 10th novel, and a dense, energetic and ultimately poignant read. -- R. Ellis

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Returns are accepted according to the Abebooks Returns Policy. We respond to all inquiries within 2 business days. The company name is Northmont Books and Stamps a dba of Northmont Publishing, Inc. The address is 35375 Northmont, Farmington Hills, Michigan 48331, U.S.A. The E-mail number is: altbkstps@aol.com and the fax number is 248-553-7677. The company's EIN number is 38-2914314. The share capital value is $1(U.S.)


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