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Experience - Leather Bound Limited Edition Hardcover – Special Edition, 18 May 2000

3.9 out of 5 stars 44 customer reviews

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--This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Product details

  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Jonathan Cape (18 May 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0224061259
  • ISBN-13: 978-0224061254
  • Product Dimensions: 17 x 4.7 x 25.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars 44 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 5,296,523 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Amazon Review

At one point in this remarkable book, Martin Amis refers to a phrase he coined in a 1983 newspaper piece on Saul Bellow. "Higher autobiography", intended to convey a fork taken by late 20th century literature, lingers on the palate long after the final page, awash with pictures of his various children. He is no longer "the kid", as Bellow puts it to him after the death of father Kingsley in 1995, and this generational shift is sharply in evidence within the quietly smouldering pages of Experience. Shunning orthodox chronology for more satisfying linearity, Amis explores the issues that have dogged his life and his reputation for too long. Though he is angry--mostly with the English media--the tone of the book is one of patient memorial and reconciliation, with most obviously Kingsley, and his own manifestations, but also with his "missing"--the cousin, Lucy Partington, a victim of Fred West's "prepotence", and the daughter, Delilah, by an earlier relationship. Gossip column titbits are confronted head-on: divorce, the change of literary agent, the falling-out with Julian Barnes, the row with Kingsley's biographer Eric Jacobs and, of course, the Teeth (actually deserving of a full set of capitals; the hardest heart would flinch and whimper at the reconstructive surgery he endured, ignorantly disparaged as "cosmetic").

The revelation of the book, however, lies in the body of the book, in its weave and stitching. Copious footnotes adorn most pages, not digressive but novelistically collusive to a self-defeating desire to "speak without artifice". A book of love, it is also one of the funniest books ever to wear the cloak of death and mortality so constantly. Money was a novel, says Amis, about "the fear that childlessness will condemn you to childishness". This volume, about how many people leave a room compared to entering it--to quote a recurrent theme--exorcises that particular fear, and a more general dread that has perpetually haunted his prose. Experience, pitched between his splendid journalism and his fiction, is a wake-up call to those who have too easily dismissed his work. It is a considerable, haunting work. --David Vincent --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

Martin Amis has written many novels, including The Rachel Papers, Money and London Fields. He is also the author of collections of stories and non-fiction including his celebrated memoir, Experience, and his book on Stalin, Koba the Dread. His most recent publication is House of Meetings, a novella, published in 2006. (2003-06-09) --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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23 August 2013
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8 January 2008
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27 January 2018
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