“After two years of careful reading, moving backwards through time, Robert McCrum has concluded his selection of the 100 greatest nonfiction books. Take a quick look at five centuries of great writing.” — The Guardian
Includes: Former President of the United States, Barack Obama, Betty Friedan, Edward Said, George Orwell, James Baldwin, Joan Didion, Michael Herr, Naomi Klein, Oliver Sacks, Susan Sontag, Virginia Woolf, and many more.
Robert McCrum (The Guardian) selects Christoper Isherwood’s novel as 83 on his list of the 100 best novels
Dedicated to Gore Vidal, A Single Man is set in 1962, just after the Cuban missile crisis, and describes a day (the last day) in the life of George Falconer, a 58-year-old expat Englishman who is living in Santa Monica and teaching at a university in LA, just as Isherwood did. The narrative is edgy, subtle, and controlled, with chasms of buried rage. George has recently lost his partner, Jim, in a car crash, and is struggling with bereavement. He tries to make a connection to the world around him, while denying his predicament as a widower. We see him go through the motions of everyday life: teaching a class, fighting with his neighbours, working out at the gym, shopping at a supermarket, drinking with an older woman friend, flirting intellectually with a young student – before fading out on the final page. As a study of grief and a portrait of the aftermath of a gay marriage, A Single Man is unique, brilliant, and deeply moving, with not a word wasted. [Read More]