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About John Gardner
John Gardner (1933–1982) was born in Batavia, New York. His critically acclaimed books include the novels Grendel, The Sunlight Dialogues, and October Light, for which he received the National Book Critics Circle Award, as well as several works of nonfiction and criticism such as On Becoming a Novelist. He was also a professor of medieval literature and a pioneering creative writing teacher whose students included Raymond Carver and Charles Johnson.
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When Grendel is drawn up from the caves under the mere, where he lives with his bloated, inarticulate hag of a mother, into the fresh night air, it is to lay waste Hrothgar's meadhall and heap destruction on the humans he finds there. What else can he do? For he is not like the men who busy themselves with God and love and beauty. He sees the infuriating human rage for order and recognises the meaninglessness of his own existence.
GRENDEL is John Gardner's masterpiece; it vividly reinvents the world of Beowulf. In Grendel himself, a creature of grotesque comedy, pain and disillusioned intelligence, Gardner has created the most unforgettable monster in fantasy.
At long last Boysie Oakes has reached seedy maturity - and he plans to grow old quietly without any more dangerous missions.
Until, like an evil genie, up pops his oily old boss, Mostyn, offering a life of renewed luxury.
Boysie is to become the sole British Director of Air Apparent, an airline which operates from one office, has no aircraft, yet, by juggling with officialdom and illegally chartering aeroplanes, manages to transfer its customers to their destinations at half the scheduled fares and still makes a vast profit.
But when Boysie discovers that Air Apparent is being used for more nefarious purposes, such as the shipment of arms to third world nations, he is forced to call in his old shooting partner, Charlie Griffin.
Events crowd in, culminating in a hijacking, hilarity and, naturally, hectic hedonism.
“Gardner’s at the top of his form.” Daily Mirror
“Boysie Oakes is at the top of his form in this topical thriller.” Guardian
“All very entertaining in a crazy sort of way.” Morning Star
‘Air Apparent’ is the seventh in the Boysie Oakes series of novels by John Gardner. Tightly written and packed with incredible twists, ‘Air Apparent’ is a brilliant continuation of the story of Gardner’s cowardly professional assassin.
It is perfect for fans of classic British spy fiction, including Ian Fleming, Len Deighton, and Desmond Bagley.
Before coming an author of fiction in the early 1960’s John Gardner was variously a stage magician, a Royal Marine officer and a journalist. In all Gardner has fifty-four novels to his credit, including Maestro, which was the New York Times book of the year. He was also invited by Ian Fleming’s literary copyright holders to write a series of continuation James Bond novels, which proved to be so successful that instead of the contracted three books he went on to publish some fourteen titles, including Licence Renewed and Icebreaker. Having lived in the Republic of Ireland, the United States and the UK, John Gardner sadly died in August of 2007 having just completed his third novel in the Moriarty trilogy, Conan Doyle’s eponymous villain of the Sherlock Holmes series.
The Conversation is the exploration by an arthritic, old spy of his life. The reality of day-to-day life is not so much slipping from his grasp as spinning him into a world of confusion and silence. By chance he meets another old spook in a small Spanish town. Their conversations bring back memories they would both prefer to forget and forces questions about their struggle with life. Questions only they can ask and answer.
Their increasing detachment from life, questioning their own memories and thoughts, leaves each of them stranded like a lone climber on an icy rock face. Can we always tell reality from dreaming? Does our past catch up with us? Was any of it real? So much smoke and mirrors that neither knows which side of the mirror they are now on. And rule number one, trust no one. Nothing is as it seems.
"Beware the Jabberwock, my son!
The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun
The frumious Bandersnatch!"