John BANVILLE

  • La mer

    John Banville

    Peu de temps après la mort de sa femme Anna, Max revient dans le village où enfant, il a passé l´été qui a façonné sa vie.
    Ce retour dans la petite station balnéaire de Ballyless, c´est une retraite contre le chagrin, la colère et la douleur de la vie sans Anna.
    Mais c´est aussi un retour sur les lieux où, cinquante ans plus tôt, Max rencontra la famille Grace : cette riche famille bourgeoise qui, cet été-là, avait loué la villa des Cèdres qui subjuguait le garçon pauvre qu´il était alors ; cette riche famille bourgeoise dont il se rapprocha et avec laquelle il expérimenta, pour la première fois, l´étrange soudaineté de l´amour et de la mort mêlés...
    /> Constance, la mère séductrice ; Carlo, le père autocrate ; Rose, la gouvernante ; et puis les mystérieux jumeaux, Chloé et Myles, le garçon muet... Chacun d´eux est l´un des acteurs des souvenirs d´enfance de Max. Et tandis qu´il revient, parce qu´il a perdu son dernier amour, sur les traces du premier (Chloé), ces souvenirs remontent à vif, à peine supportables. Car cet été-là s´est terminé sur une tragédie...
    Entremêlés à l´histoire de cet été dont il va peu à peu comprendre, un demi-siècle après ce qui s´y est passé, l´influence déterminante qu´il a eu sur son existence d´homme, il y a ses souvenirs de sa femme, de leur vie ensemble, de sa maladie et de la longue année de souffrance qui a fini par l´emporter. Il y a aussi les liens de sa vie présente : avec sa fille Claire, âgée de vingt ans, qui s´inquiète pour lui ; avec les autres locataires des Cèdres qui ont eux aussi leurs secrets.
    De même que le mouvement de la mer sans cesse se renouvelle, ce flux et ce reflux de souvenirs mêlés au présent du narrateur ouvrent chez le lecteur des échos infinis... Magistralement composé et écrit, La Mer est un roman d´une beauté envoûtante, mélancolique et sensuelle, sur l´amour, la perte et le pouvoir de la mémoire.

  • Infinis

    John Banville

    Adam Godley, un brillant mathématicien - spécialiste de l´infinité des infinis, et de la possibilité d´univers parallèles - repose dans sa chambre, au seuil de la mort. Autour de lui, dans une maison à l´atmosphère oppressante, le veillent sa deuxième épouse, sa fille - une adolescente fragile -, son fils, accompagné de sa femme, Helen, une comédienne à la beauté troublante.
    En un jour, en un lieu, ce monde mortel et imparfait va recevoir la visite invisible des dieux de l´Olympe, des dieux à l´esprit facétieux, qui vont se plaire à prendre la place des humains pour satisfaire leurs désirs illicites. Zeus, follement épris d´Helen, se fera passer le temps d´une nuit pour son mari afin de jouir de ses charmes. Puis en prenant l´apparence de Rody, le fiancé de la fille d´Adam, il poursuivra son oeuvre de séduction.
    Hermès, le fils de Zeus, est le narrateur espiègle de cette tragi-comédie ensorcelante, qui évoque le Songe d´une nuit d´été, en illustrant la folie de l´amour et des actes qu´il peut nous pousser à commettre. Hermès se déguisera lui-même en fermier pour conquérir l´une des servantes, sans se soucier des conséquences. Ainsi la présence des dieux va bientôt faire exploser les tensions jusque-là silencieuses, exaspérer les drames, tandis qu´Adam, toujours mourant, revit dans son esprit le souvenir de ses années passées.
    En s´inspirant de l´Amphitryon de Kleist, Banville mêle les genres avec virtuosité, dans une langue iridescente et poétique. Le texte oscille constamment entre gravité et ironie. Le réel et le merveilleux se répondent, donnent une profondeur envoûtante au récit. En mêlant des questions métaphysiques et humaines, Banville ne cesse d´interroger le sens de notre existence, son mystère et sa beauté.

  • Oliver Orme, vous le savez sans doute, est un peintre dont le talent est reconnu dans le monde entier. Ce que vous ignorez encore, c'est qu'il a cessé de peindre, en proie à des doutes esthétiques. Et qu'il a passé sa vie à voler des choses de valeurs diverses à son entourage, non par cupidité mais par goût, éprouvant un plaisir quasi érotique à subtiliser des objets.
    L'un de ces objets subtilisés à d'autres, en l'occurrence à son ami Marcus, est Polly, dont il fait sa maîtresse. Mais, tout comme il a fui son épouse Gloria, il fi nit par la laisser un jour où il ressent le besoin de se réfugier dans sa maison natale, aussi délabrée soit-elle. Or bientôt Polly le retrouve, et leur histoire d'amour renaît de ses cendres.
    Entre passion, désillusion, jalousie et égoïsme, Oliver déverse le fl ux de ses pensées comme il brossait autrefois ses toiles, cherchant toujours le mot juste, pour être le plus vrai possible, si tant est que le vrai existe en ce monde.

  • A beautiful, beguiling book full of resonances that continue to sound long after youve turned the final page. Its imagining is magical, its execution dazzlingly skilful. Sunday Tribune Ghosts opens with a shipwreck, leaving a party of sightseers temporarily marooned on an island. The stranded castaways make their way towards the refuge of the isles reclusive savant; but the big isolated house which is home to Professor Silas Kreutznaer and his laconic assistant, Licht, is also home to another, unnamed presence . . . Onto this seemingly haunted island, where a strange singing hangs in the air, Banville drops a scrumptious cast of characters including a murderer and weaves a tale where the details are clear but the conclusion polymorphous shifting appearances, transformations and thwarted assumptions make this world of uneasy calm utterly enthralling. As fascinating, complex, stimulating and energetic as any work of art . . . A work which proves Banville as a master, the artist in total control of his craft The Times John Banville’s funniest book . . . another triumph by our most outrageously inventive and daring novelist Sunday Independent Makes this astonishingly attractive novelist one of the most important writers now at work in English a key thinker, in fact, in fiction London Review of Books

  • On a languid midsummer';s day in the countryside, old Adam Godley, a renowned theoretical mathematician, is dying. His family gathers at his bedside: his son, young Adam, struggling to maintain his marriage to a radiantly beautiful actress; his nineteen-year-old daughter, Petra, filled with voices and visions as she waits for the inevitable; their mother, Ursula, whose relations with the Godley children are strained at best; and Petra';s "young man"--very likely more interested in the father than the daughter--who has arrived for a superbly ill-timed visit.
    But the Godley family is not alone in their vigil. Around them hovers a family of mischievous immortals--among them, Zeus, who has his eye on young Adam';s wife; Pan, who has taken the doughy, perspiring form of an old unwelcome acquaintance; and Hermes, who is the genial and omniscient narrator: "We too are petty and vindictive," he tells us, "just like you, when we are put to it." As old Adam';s days on earth run down, these unearthly beings start to stir up trouble, to sometimes wildly unintended effect. . . .
    Blissfully inventive and playful, rich in psychological insight and sensual detail, The Infinities is at once a gloriously earthy romp and a wise look at the terrible, wonderful plight of being human--a dazzling novel from one of the most widely admired and acclaimed writers at work today.
    From the Hardcover edition.

  • In this deeply moving and original book, John Banville alloys mystery, fable, and ghost story with poignant psychological acuity to forge the riveting story of a man wary of the future, plagued by the past, and so uncertain in the present that he cannot discern the spectral from the real.When renowned actor Alexander Cleave was a boy living in a large house with his widowed mother and various itinerant lodgers, he encountered a strikingly vivid ghost of his father. Now that he';s fifty and has returned to his boyhood home to recover from a nervous breakdown on stage, he is not surprised to find the place still haunted. He is surprised, however, at the presence of two new lodgers who have covertly settled into his old roost. And he is soon overwhelmed by how they, coupled with an onslaught of disturbing memories, compel him to confront the clutter that has become his life: ruined career, tenuous marriage, and troubled relationship with an estranged daughter destined for doom.From the Trade Paperback edition.

  • John Banville';s stunning powers of mimicry are brilliantly on display in this engrossing novel, the darkly compelling confession of an improbable murderer.
    Freddie Montgomery is a highly cultured man, a husband and father living the life of a dissolute exile on a Mediterranean island. When a debt comes due and his wife and child are held as collateral, he returns to Ireland to secure funds. That pursuit leads to murder. And here is his attempt to present evidence, not of his innocence, but of his life, of the events that lead to the murder he committed because he could. Like a hero out of Nabokov or Camus, Montgomery is a chillingly articulate, self-aware, and amoral being, whose humanity is painfully on display.

  • Superbly illuminates the man, the time, and the everlasting quest for knowledge Observer Johannes Kepler, born in 1571 in south Germany, was one of the worlds greatest mathematicians and astronomers. This novel brilliantly recreates his life and his incredible drive to chart the orbits of the planets and the geometry of the universe while being driven from exile to exile by religious and domestic strife. At the same time it illuminates the harsh realities of the Renaissance world; rich in imaginative daring but rooted in poverty, squalor and the tyrannical power of emperors. Narrative art at a positively symphonic level Guardian One knows one is in the presence of a writer extraordinary. Wearing his vast research lightly, Mr Banville not only summons Kepler and his company of vivid souls but leads us into the small dark rooms Sunday Telegraph This very distinguished novel . . . is done with very considerable skill; it suggests that this is what such a life must indeed have been like and the result is a wonderfully human figure, rife with feelings, principles, regrets and courage Sunday Times An outstandingly good novel . . . a novel that dramatizes and celebrates intellectual passion. Which makes it a very rare novel indeed Irish Press

  • Banville is superb . . . there are not many historical novels of which it can be said that they illuminate both the time that forms their subject matter and the time in which they are read: Doctor Copernicus is among the very best of them The Economist The work of Nicholas Koppernigk, better known as Copernicus, shattered the medieval view of the universe and led to the formulation of the image of the solar system we know today. Here his life is powerfully evoked in a novel that offers a vivid portrait of a man of painful reticence, haunted by a malevolent brother and baffled by the conspiracies that rage around him and his ideas while he searches for the secret of life. Banville writes novels of complex patterning, with grace, precision and timing Guardian With his fastidious wit and exquisite style, John Banville is the heir to Nabokov Daily Telegraph A tour de force: a fictional evocation of the great astronomer which is exciting, beautifully written and astonishingly redolent of the late medieval world The Times

  • Sleek, beautiful, breathtakingly cunning prose Sunday Times Morrow a clerkish, middle-aged type encumbered with a chain-smoking dying aunt and a considerable talent for wallowing is at a loose end when, on two separate occasions, he is beckoned up the stairs of an empty Dublin house. The first is an offer of dubious work, and Morrow soon becomes caught up in a conspiracy to authenticate a series of fake paintings. The second, possibly even odder, is an offer of a love of a sort. Written in typically luminous prose and featuring a rich cast of characters, Athena is a paean to art, painting, and love, in all its mercurial richness. One of the most profoundly intelligent, introspective novels of recent years, questioning the perceptions of author, narrator, reader and critic Good Book Guide The consummately achieved and entrancing creation of a master of language: in the fullest sense a work of art Scotsman Athena is a love letter to Morrows passions, to love, to art and to the paintings he examines: works on classical themes, in which a moments obsession, lust, loss and magic are preserved for ever Literary Review Volume Thre of the Frames Trilogy

  • Shroud will not be easily surpassed for its combination of wit, moral complexity and compassion. It is hard to see what more a novel could do Irish Times Axel Vander, distinguished intellectual and elderly academic, is not the man he seems. When a letter arrives out of the blue, threatening to unveil his secrets and carefully concealed identity Vander travels to Turin to meet its author. There, muddled by age and alcohol, unable always to distinguish fact from fiction, Vander comes face to face with the woman who has the knowledge to unmask him, Cass Cleave. However, her sense of reality is as unreliable as his, and the two are quickly drawn together, their relationship dark, disturbed and doomed to disaster from its very start. In beautiful, lucid prose John Banville describes a tragedy so strongly rooted in history and character that, like all real tragedies, it could not happen otherwise The Times The narrative frequently takes on the qualities of a dream, writhing with pursuits and escapes, peopled by shapeshifters and avatars, subject to its own climatic and topographical realities Guardian A moving and shockingly intimate record of life lost and found again Time Out

  • A collection of short stories from the early years of Man Booker Prize-winning author John Banvilles career, Long Lankin explores the passionate emotions--fear, jealousy, desire--that course beneath the surface of everyday life. From a couple at risk of being torn apart by the allure of wealth to an old mans descent into nature, the tales in this collection showcase the talents that launched Banville onto the literary scene. Offering a unique insight into the mind of one of the great living masters of English-language prose (Los Angeles Times), these nine haunting sketches stand alone as canny observations on the turbulence of the human condition.

  • Victor Maskell has been betrayed. After the announcement in the Commons and the hasty revelation of his double life of wartime espionage, his disgrace is public, his knighthood revoked, his position as curator of the Queens pictures terminated. There are questions to be answered. For whom has he been sacrificed? To what has he sacrificed his life? The Untouchable is an engrossing, exquisitely written and almost bewilderingly smart book . . . Its the fullest book Ive read in a very long time, utterly accomplished, thoroughly readable, written by a novelist of vast talent Richard Ford, Times Literary Supplement, Books of the Year No novel burrowed deeper beneath my skin than The Untouchable . . . Prose of great elegance, applied to a sardonic narrative, created an atmosphere at once austere, chilling and utterly believable John Coldstream, Daily Telegraph, Books of the Year Banville is the most intelligent and stylish novelist currently at work in English . . . the mien is austere and Victorian; the awareness, the ironic readings of the contemporary are razor-sharp George Steiner, Observer Brilliant displays of power and control . . . magnificently written and, in its exploration of inhumanity, startlingly humane Alex Clark, Guardian, Books of the Year

  • With an introduction by Colm Toibín.Shortlisted for the 1989 Booker Prize, a dark and unsettling crime classic.25TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION WITH EXTRA MATERIALFrederick Charles St John Vanderveld Montgomery. Do you swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth? Don't make me laugh.Freddie Montgomery has committed two crimes. He stole a Dutch old-master painting from a wealthy family friend and murdered the chambermaid who caught him in the act. Narcissistic, greedy and reckless, Freddie travels through life apparently without remorse. However, as he narrates his testimony, he realises that the only person to be held responsible for his life, and his crimes, is himself. He just can't quite admit it yet . . .Shortlisted for the 1989 Booker Prize, The Book of Evidence is a wonderfully dark, insightful and unnerving crime novel that takes us deep into the unreliable mind of an improbable murderer.

  • Having fled Rome and a stultifying marriage, Isabel Osmond is in London, brooding on the recent disclosure of her husband's shocking, years-long betrayal of her. What should she do now, and which way should she turn, in the emotional labyrinth where she has been trapped for so long? Reawakened by grief and the knowledge of having been grievously wronged, she determines to resume her youthful quest for freedom and independence. Soon Isabel must return to Italy and confront her husband, and seek to break his powerful hold on her. But will she succeed in outwitting him, and securing her revenge?Mrs Osmond is a masterly novel of betrayal, corruption and moral ambiguity, from the Man Booker Prize-winning author of The Sea.

  • En avant-première, découvrez les premiers chapitres des titres de la rentrée littéraire 2014 des éditions Robert Laffont :
    Littérature française Romain Slocombe, Avis à mon exécuteur Gonzague Tosseri, Le Bal des hommes Jennifer Murzeau, Il bouge encore Littérature étrangère Margaret Atwood, MaddAddam Shani Boianjiu, Nous faisions semblant d'être quelqu'un d'autre John Banville, La Lumière des étoiles mortes

  • Anglais Untouchable

    Banville John

    Victor Maskell has been betrayed. After the announcement in the Commons and the hasty revelation of his double life of wartime espionage, his disgrace is public, his knighthood revoked, his position as curator of the Queens pictures terminated. There are questions to be answered. For whom has he been sacrificed? To what has he sacrificed his life? The Untouchable is an engrossing, exquisitely written and almost bewilderingly smart book . . . Its the fullest book Ive read in a very long time, utterly accomplished, thoroughly readable, written by a novelist of vast talent Richard Ford, Times Literary Supplement, Books of the Year No novel burrowed deeper beneath my skin than The Untouchable . . . Prose of great elegance, applied to a sardonic narrative, created an atmosphere at once austere, chilling and utterly believable John Coldstream, Daily Telegraph, Books of the Year Banville is the most intelligent and stylish novelist currently at work in English . . . the mien is austere and Victorian; the awareness, the ironic readings of the contemporary are razor-sharp George Steiner, Observer Brilliant displays of power and control . . . magnificently written and, in its exploration of inhumanity, startlingly humane Alex Clark, Guardian, Books of the Year

  • The Man Booker Prize-winning author of The Sea gives us a brilliant, profoundly moving new novel about an actor in the twilight of his life and his career: a meditation on love and loss, and on the inscrutable immediacy of the past in our present lives.
    Is there any difference between memory and invention? That is the question that fuels this stunning novel, written with the depth of character, the clarifying lyricism and the sly humor that have marked all of John Banvilles extraordinary works. And it is the question that haunts Alexander Cleave, an actor in the twilight of his career and of his life, as he plumbs the memories of his first--and perhaps only--love (he, fifteen years old, the woman more than twice his age, the mother of his best friend; the situation impossible, thrilling, devouring and finally devastating) . . . and of his daughter, lost to a kind of madness of mind and heart that Cleave can only fail to understand. When his dormant acting career is suddenly, inexplicably revived with a movie role portraying a man who may not be who he says he is, his young leading lady--famous and fragile--unwittingly gives him the opportunity to see with aching clarity the chasm that yawns between the doing of a thing and the recollection of what was done.
    Ancient Light is a profoundly moving meditation on love and loss, on the inscrutable immediacy of the past in our present lives, on how invention shapes memory an memory shapes the man. It is a book of spellbinding power and pathos from one of the greatest masters of prose at work today.
    From the Hardcover edition.

  • Anglais Newton Letter

    Banville John

    A nearly perfectly fashioned work of art . . . The Newton Letter gave this reader such pleasurable excitement that he found it impossible to concentrate on anything until he had read it again to make sure that it seemed as good on the seconding reading. It did Irish Times A historian, on the brink of completing a book on Isaac Newton, rents a cottage in southern Ireland for the summer. As the summer wears on and he dissects Newtons mental collapse of 1693 he becomes distracted by the mysterious occupants of Fern House and finds himself constructing their imagined histories to powerful effect. His elaborate attempts to decipher the complex web of relationships are, however, far from accurate . . . How is one to convey halfadequately that Banvilles The Newton Letter is something out of the ordinary? Sunday Times Banvilles prose has a dazzling amplitude and resource . . . a novelist of international calibre Boston Globe /p> Very precise and evocative . . . full of teasing alignments and variations Financial Times Volume Three of the Revolutions Trilogy

  • Anglais Shroud

    Banville John

    Shroud will not be easily surpassed for its combination of wit, moral complexity and compassion. It is hard to see what more a novel could do Irish Times Axel Vander, distinguished intellectual and elderly academic, is not the man he seems. When a letter arrives out of the blue, threatening to unveil his secrets and carefully concealed identity Vander travels to Turin to meet its author. There, muddled by age and alcohol, unable always to distinguish fact from fiction, Vander comes face to face with the woman who has the knowledge to unmask him, Cass Cleave. However, her sense of reality is as unreliable as his, and the two are quickly drawn together, their relationship dark, disturbed and doomed to disaster from its very start. In beautiful, lucid prose John Banville describes a tragedy so strongly rooted in history and character that, like all real tragedies, it could not happen otherwise The Times The narrative frequently takes on the qualities of a dream, writhing with pursuits and escapes, peopled by shapeshifters and avatars, subject to its own climatic and topographical realities Guardian A moving and shockingly intimate record of life lost and found again Time Out

  • Anglais Ghosts

    Banville John

    In this brilliantly haunting new novel, John Banville forges an unforgettable amalgam of enchantment and menace that suggests both The Tempest and his own acclaimed The Book of Evidence. "A surreal and exquisitely lyrical new novel by one of the great stylists writing in English today."--Boston Globe.

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