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Long Lankin


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A collection of short stories from the early years of Man Booker Prize-winning author John Banville’s career, Long Lankin explores the passionate emotions—fear, jealousy, desire—that course beneath the surface of everyday life. From a couple at risk of being torn apart by the allure of wealth to an old man’s descent into nature, the tales in this collection showcase the talents that launched Banville onto the literary scene. Offering a unique insight into the mind of “one of the great living masters of English-language prose” (Los Angeles Times), these nine haunting sketches stand alone as canny observations on the turbulence of the human condition.

From Publishers Weekly

Jul 01, 2013 – Two boys hide out in the woods, a girl meets a mysterious man on a bicycle, and siblings sneak down to the sea to look at a dead body in this slim collection of early stories from Banville (Booker Prize winner for The Sea). Nearly every story features two or three characters in a single scenario and the stripped-down prose often means to emphasize what's happening between the lines. Common themes arise: death, innocence lost, and insanity are prominently featured. The latter is the centerpiece of Long Lankin's best (and final) story, "De Rerum Natura", which begins with an old man seeing acrobats in his garden. Over the course of the story, the language frays and reality blurs, so much so that it begins to affect the old man's son and his wife, who are trying to take him away to a home. Often the stories are too brief and too restrained to make more than a passing impression, but this story represents how good Long Lankin is at its best: when the writing lets go of its rigidity and opacity and Banville loosens up, he possesses a rare command of language.
Long Lankin
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  • $7.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Literary
  • Published: Jul 02, 2013
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Seller: Penguin Random House LLC
  • Print Length: 112 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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