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Ancient Light

Ancient Light by John Banville
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The Man Booker Prize-winning author of The Sea gives us a brilliant, profoundly moving new novel about an actor in the twilight of his life and his career: a meditation on love and loss, and on the inscrutable immediacy of the past in our present lives.

Is there any difference between memory and invention? That is the question that fuels this stunning novel, written with the depth of character, the clarifying lyricism and the sly humor that have marked all of John Banville’s extraordinary works. And it is the question that haunts Alexander Cleave, an actor in the twilight of his career and of his life, as he plumbs the memories of his first—and perhaps only—love (he, fifteen years old, the woman more than twice his age, the mother of his best friend; the situation impossible, thrilling, devouring and finally devastating) . . . and of his daughter, lost to a kind of madness of mind and heart that Cleave can only fail to understand. When his dormant acting career is suddenly, inexplicably revived with a movie role portraying a man who may not be who he says he is, his young leading lady—famous and fragile—unwittingly gives him the opportunity to see with aching clarity the “chasm that yawns between the doing of a thing and the recollection of what was done.”

Ancient Light is a profoundly moving meditation on love and loss, on the inscrutable immediacy of the past in our present lives, on how invention shapes memory and memory shapes the man. It is a book of spellbinding power and pathos from one of the greatest masters of prose at work today.

This eBook edition includes a Reading Group Guide.
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group; October 2012
304 pages; ISBN 9780307960832
Read online, or download in secure EPUB
Title: Ancient Light
Author: John Banville
  • News
Reflections of a first affair - Sydney Morning Herald
Fri, 27 Jul 2012 07:03:12 -0700
Sydney Morning HeraldReflections of a first affairSydney Morning HeraldEARLY in John Banville's Ancient Light, the ...
Ancient Light by John Banville: review -
Wed, 04 Jul 2012 23:01:50 -0700 Light by John Banville: he first catches sight of his best friend's mother ...
Book Review: Vengeance, by Benjamin Black and Ancient Light, by John Banville - National Post
Fri, 16 Nov 2012 06:00:33 -0800
National PostBook Review: Vengeance, by Benjamin Black and Ancient Light, by John BanvilleNational PostVengeance, released in ...