Athena : A Novel (Paperback)

Author: Banville, John

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Product Overview

An artist with a violent past meets a woman who appears to emerge from his paintings, and their subsequent compulsive affair is reflected in his artwork, until the woman suddenly vanishes. Reprint. 10,000 first printing. *Author: Banville, John *Subtitle: A Novel *Publication Date: 1996/06/01 *Binding Type: Paperback *Language: English *Depth: 0.75 *Width: 5.25 *Height: 8.25


Publisher Random House Inc
Mfg Part# 9780679736851
SKU 30118290
Format Paperback
ISBN10 0679736859
Release Date 6/1/1996
Dimensions (in Inches) 8.25H x 5.25L x 0.75T
Author Info
John Banville
Banville was born in Wexford in southeast Ireland, and was educated at Catholic schools. Interestingly, in light of his considerable erudition, he never went to university (a decision he regrets); instead, he got a job with Aerlingus so he could travel. He has lived in for many years in Dublin with his wife and sons, and has served as literary editor of the Irish Times. His fiction is famous for its mordant wit, cold-hearted characters, and irradiated language. After several early novels, he wrote a trilogy of novels about great men of science (DOCTOR COPERNICUS, KEPLER, THE NEWTON LETTER); these novels surpassed the historical context, and became literary investigations of knowledge and meaning. He followed this up with another trilogy that featured one of the literature's most unreliable and sympathetic villains in the form of Freddie Montgomery, an intelligent, vainglorious, and obsessive young narrator. In THE BOOK OF EVIDENCE Montgomery writes from a prison cell after a motiveless murder of a maid. The book was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 1989; he would eventually win the prize in 2005 for his novel THE SEA. Known for his arrogance, Banville said in his acceptance speech that "It is nice to see a work of art win the Booker prize." He followed up his literary triumph with a quickly written crime fiction novel CHRISTINE FALLS, published under the pseudonym of Benjamin Black.
"Plot counts for nothing here, or seems not to, and mood becomes all--a mood sustained by a prose of idiosyncratic and appalling charm....'Athena' is as grotesque as a portrait by Arcimboldo, in which flowers and fruit and even fish can become the features in a human face, and every bit as beautiful."
"Banville, a most intelligent writer for whom other writers have the highest respect, has here given not life, but the seeming-life of other books. He has in the past given us superb fiction that did, surely, live."
"Stripped clean of contemporary talk show anodynes and psychobabble bromides, the world of Athena is finally hyperreal--one in which loneliness, loss and despair throb at the very center of its being, and poetry, once again, is possible."
"The affair with this woman he chooses to address simply as A. is the matter of this book...Just as dangerous, hilarious, exalting, entangling as the affair is the language in which it is cast: In fact they are not different. I suppose this should not need to be said, except that it is so rarely achieved. Nabokov's 'Lolita' and 'Laughter in the Dark' come to mind as worthy comparisons...John Banville is a splendid and daring writer at the height of his powers, and his central theme is his own moving hand and eye: his theme is Delight."
From the Publisher
Annotation John Banville's third novel featuring his witty and cynical antihero, Freddie Montgomery (here called simply Morrow), a man with a violent past and a fascination with 17th-century Flemish art. In this novel, he is the unwitting center of an art fraud, and is drawn into a dangerous relationship with a mysterious woman.
Editors Note From the internationally acclaimed author of The Book of Evidence and Ghosts comes a mesmerizing novel that is both a literary thriller and a love story as sumptuously perverse as Lolita. "A strange and dreamlike book . . . Banville has a breathtaking style."--Boston Globe.
Product Attributes
eBooks Kobo
Book Format Paperback
Number of Pages 0240
Publisher Vintage Books

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