Julian Barnes, author of the Man Booker Prize–winning novel The Sense of an Ending, gives us his most powerfully moving book yet, beginning in the nineteenth century and leading seamlessly into an entirely personal account of loss—making Levels of Life an immediate classic on the subject of grief.
Levels of Life is a book about ballooning, photography, love and loss; about putting two things, and two people, together, and about tearing them apart. One of the judges who awarded Barnes the 2011 Booker Prize described him as “an unparalleled magus of the heart.” This book confirms that opinion.
“Spare and beautiful...a book of rare intimacy and honesty about love and grief. To read it is a privilege. To have written it is astonishing.” —Ruth Scurr, The Times of London
“A remarkable narrative that is as raw in its emotion as it is characteristically elegant in its execution.” —Eileen Battersby, The Irish Times
This ebook edition includes a reading group guide.
About Julian BarnesSee more books from this Author
...Levels of Life...is a book that levels with us only up to a point. Its resonance comes from all it doesn't say, as well as what it does; from the depth of love we infer from the desert of grief.Read Full Review of Levels of Life | See more reviews from Guardian
The combination of forms and styles, slipping to and fro between airy fantasy and the grim immitigable facts of disease and death, really shouldn't work – but it does, thanks to Barnes's deft emotional insight and his verbal legerdemain.Read Full Review of Levels of Life | See more reviews from Guardian
I find it astounding that he never loses control of the narrative, despite his grief. He builds a pattern, a different, more realistic “7 stages of grief” which we can all relate to, no matter how far removed.Read Full Review of Levels of Life | See more reviews from NY Journal of Books
...Levels of Life takes flight with its third, autobiographical section, "The Loss of Depth." After a vigil that lasted just "thirty-seven days from diagnosis to death," Barnes crash-landed into widowerhood. Normally so crisp and circumspect, Barnes writes movingly...Read Full Review of Levels of Life | See more reviews from NPR
“Levels of Life” shows that Barnes still loves and longs, five years after his wife’s death. The proof is there even before we start reading: the book’s dedication, as with all of those that preceded it, says, “For Pat.”Read Full Review of Levels of Life | See more reviews from Star Tribune
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