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Eclipseby John Banville
Synopses & Reviews
With this latest novel, John Banville — who has forged a brilliant international reputation with such works as The Book of Evidence and The Untouchable — applies piercing reality to a ghost story to create a profoundly moving tale of a man confronting a life gone awry.
The renowned actor Alexander Cleave has had a breakdown on stage. To recover, he retreats to his boyhood home. Haunted when he lived there as a youth, the house still shelters spirits, and now there are two new lodgers in residence. Overcome by resonant memories that seem to rise up out of the house itself, Cleave is compelled to consider his ruined career, his failing marriage, and his poignant relationship with an estranged daughter destined for doom. Breathtaking, even hypnotic, Eclipse is a virtuoso performance by a writer in a league with Nabokov and DeLillo.
"An impressive, effective novel, bracing as a nightmare." Chicago Tribune
"Mr. Banville is that rare writer who can pack all five senses into a declarative sentence." The Wall Street Journal
"[Eclipse] captures in its pages a felt life so dense, so swift in its paranoid momentum, that the whole idea of the novel as a window to the self seems viable again. This is as true as things ever get." Esquire
"[Banville] has an uncanny ability to pinpoint and record sensations rarely brought to consciousness....Eclipse wakes us up to things we should have noticed." San Francisco Chronicle
With his latest novel, John Banville — who has forged a brilliant international reputation with such works as The Book of Evidence and The Untouchable — applies piercing reality to a ghost story to create a profoundly moving tale of a man confronting a life gone awry. Breathtaking, even hypnotic, Eclipse is a virtuoso performance.
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 hes 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.
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