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Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Jun 3, 2009 - Fiction - 176 pages
19 Reviews
An early classic from the Man Booker-prize winning author of The Sea.

I am therefore I think. So starts John Banville’s 1973 novel Birchwood, a novel that centers around Gabriel Godkin and his return to his dilapidated family estate. After years away, Gabriel returns to a house filled with memories and despair. Delving deep into family secrets—a cold father, a tortured mother, an insane grandmother—Gabriel also recalls his first encounters with love and loss. At once a novel of a family, of isolation, and of a blighted Ireland, Birchwood is a remarkable and complex story about the end of innocence for one boy and his country, told in the brilliantly styled prose of one of our most essential writers.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

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Review: Birchwood

User Review  - Sophy - Goodreads

A beautifully executed piece of postmodernist writing. Multifaceted, ironic and hilarious at times. Read full review

Review: Birchwood

User Review  - Shawn - Goodreads

No one writes more beautifully than Banville, who is a master of the elegiac prose poem. If this sample hits home for you, you'll love this book: “We climbed the steps, into the hall, and Mama ... Read full review

Selected pages


PART IThe Book of the Dead
PART IIAir and Angels
Also by John Banville

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About the author (2009)

John Banville is the author of ten novels, including the Man Booker-prize winning novel The Sea. He lives in Dublin, Ireland.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

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