The Go-Between by L.P. Hartley
(New York Review Books Classics)

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“The past is a foreign country: they do things differently there.”

Summering with a fellow schoolboy on a great English estate, Leo, the hero of L. P. Hartley’s finest novel, encounters a world of unimagined luxury. But when his friend’s beautiful older sister enlists him as the unwitting messenger in her illicit love affair, the aftershocks will be felt for years. The inspiration for the brilliant Joseph Losey/Harold Pinter film starring Julie Christie and Alan Bates, The Go-Between is a masterpiece—a richly layered, spellbinding story about past and present, naïveté and knowledge, and the mysteries of the human heart. This volume includes, for the first time ever in North America, Hartley’s own introduction to the novel.

About L.P. Hartley

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L.P. Hartley (1895-1972), the son of the director of a brickworks, attended Harrow and Balliol College, Oxford, before setting out on a career as a literary critic and writer of short stories. In 1944 he published his first novel, The Shrimp and the Anemone, the opening volume of the trilogy Eustace and Hilda. In the spring of 1952, Hartley began The Go-Between, a novel strongly rooted in his childhood. By October he had already completed the first draft, and the finished product was published in early 1953. The Go-Between became an immediate critical and popular success and has long been considered Hartley's finest book. His many other novels include Facial Justice, The Hireling, and The Love-Adept. Anita Brookner is an art historian and novelist. She lives in London.
Published November 30, 2011 by NYRB Classics. 344 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Education & Reference, Romance, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Action & Adventure, History. Fiction

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A quiet novel of a summer holiday transcribes the drama of a love affair and its betrayal through the deceptively disarming eyes of the youngster who is at first an accessory and then a victim of a situation he cannot really understand.

Jul 26 1954 | Read Full Review of The Go-Between (New York Revi...


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A summer visit to a friend's English estate lands a young man in hot water when he falls for his host's older sister and becomes embroiled in a dangerous game.

Jun 30 2011 | Read Full Review of The Go-Between (New York Revi...


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Have you ever had an experience so profound, you felt like a different person once it was over? Author Ann Brashares recommends a story of heartbreak that remakes the personality of a young teen: The Go-Between, by L.P. Hartley.

Jun 22 2011 | Read Full Review of The Go-Between (New York Revi...

The New York Review of Books

One of the fabled opening lines in modern literature: ‘The past is a foreign country: They do things differently there.’ The NYRB paperback has a superb new introduction by Colm Tóibín, but don’t read it until after you’ve read the book itself.

Mar 31 2002 | Read Full Review of The Go-Between (New York Revi...

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