Stephan Lee
October 11, 2011 AT 04:00 AM EDT

The Sense of an Ending

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Julian Barnes
publisher
Knopf
genre
Fiction

We gave it a B+

Barnes’ brief but deft novel The Sense of an Ending, currently shortlisted for England’s Man Booker Prize, reads like a particularly thoughtful memoir. Tony Webster, a contented man settling comfortably into middle age, fondly carries his youth with him until a long-ago first love and an old childhood friend begin to haunt his present, forcing him to question the core of his character. Barnes’ latest — a meditation on memory and aging — occasionally feels more like a series of wise, underline-worthy insights than a novel. But the many truths he highlights make it worthy of a careful read. B+

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