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Old Men in Love Hardcover – 1 Oct 2007

3.6 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC; First Edition edition (1 Oct. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0747593531
  • ISBN-13: 978-0747593539
  • Product Dimensions: 16.5 x 24.1 x 2.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,129,571 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

`As Jonathan Coe once put it in an essay on Gray's 1982, Janine (1984), you get an immediate sense of being "in thoroughly genial if eccentric company"... There's something appealingly direct about the way his characters get to grips with political questions.' -- Christopher Tayler, Guardian

`Bloomsbury has done this handsomely, making of Tunnock's tales a gorgeous object in eye-bending blue and silver...... Gray's startling imagination fizzes throughout ... beautiful, inventive, ambitious and nuts' -- Sophie Harrison, Sunday Times

`I've always admired the style and polish of his work' -- Tibor Fischer, Financial Times

`Old Men in Love is an Escher book, a book of recursions, a perverse self-parody ... this is a beautiful book, printed in black and Saltire blue, with a silk ribbon bookmark, inlaid cover and the author's own striking illustrations' -- James Purdon, Observer

`Alasdair Gray, it seems, is unwilling to muck about with a good formula... A work of some genius... If you like Alasdair Gray, this has it all.' -- Tim Martin, Independent on Sunday

About the Author

Alasdair Gray is the author of the Whitbread and Guardian Prize-winning novel Poor Things and the story-collection Ten Tales Tall and True.


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Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
To read Alasdair Gray, a man who interrupts his own interruptions, is a joyful nosedive into freewheeling post-modernist headspin. The only way to do it is to let go, let it happen and trust the author's bounce will keep you from smacking into the ground. Old Men in Love, how do I love that title, repays that trust. Gray has enough bounce to keep us all up in the air. Here the main character takes the biscuit. John Tunnock - and, yes, you're probably supposed to wonder if that's toilet and teacake or anything else that goes with too much tea - is a wheeze, dead in mysterious circumstances, brought to life by his diaries, a writer who failed to write three novels. Why three? Why not seven, or forty seven? There is a reason. Gray is examining himself in this novel. The three unwritten novels derive from three plays written by Gray 30 to 40 years ago, set in the Athens of Socrates, in Renaissance Florence and Victoria's Britain.

When reading Gray erroneous questions tag onto every given fact. You suspect clues or trickery or just plain playfulness as this master of verve draws you into a verbal Alice-through-the-looking-glass world where you pretty much write your own story led by the maddest hatter at that proverbial tea-party. Or at least, I do, playing constantly suspicious, because the innocuous breezy side-step will, in the end, and long after you dismissed it, turn out to be the point. Playing himself in his own novel, Gray responds to the question 'End notes or footnotes' with 'Marginal notes. I like widening my readers' range of expectations.' There we have it, wider they cannot be. Don't expect storytelling. This is philosophical meandering around topics that range from Iraq to the tug-of-war between art and commerce.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
havent read a word yet but the presentation, dustsheet, art work, original headers, footers, chapter head doodles, paper stock quality, ribbon,occasional full & part page illustrations, font choice, all a step up from all but pricey art books. If the prose is a patch on Lanark I expect to purr.
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Format: Paperback
As brilliant as you would expect from the incomparable Gray. Not up there with 1982, Janine or Poor Things, but still better than around 90% of all other modern English language novelists. Read this.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Didn't finish the book. It seemed like a dreamed up a plot to recycle old deleted material.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I thought I'd give this author another try having failed many years ago to get to grips with his earliest novel. Potentially this novel is an interesting read but I didn't appreciate the long historical diversions from the main plot. I just didn't get the point of it all.

Now I know this marks me down as a complete philistine since the chattering classes seem to be unanimous in praising this author. Too bad. For me the book was a disappointing experience. For my money there are more enjoyable books even if they won't impress one's friends so much.
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