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Love, Etc [Read] ➵ Love, Etc By Julian Barnes – Buyprobolan50.co.uk The love triangle continued We have met Stuart before And his best friend Oliver and Gillian, the woman they both loved In Julian Barnes s Talking It Over Gillian and Stuart were married until Oliver The love triangle continued We have met Stuart before And his best friend Oliver and Gillian, the woman they both loved In Julian Barnes s Talking It Over Gillian and Stuart were married until Oliver witty, feckless Oliver stole her away In Love, Etc Barnes revisits Stuart, Gillian and Oliver using the same intimate technique of allowing the characters to speak directly to the reader, to whisper their secrets, to argue for their version of the truth Darker and deeper than its predecessor Love, Etc is a compelling exploration of contemporary love and its betrayals.

  • Paperback
  • 240 pages
  • Love, Etc
  • Julian Barnes
  • English
  • 22 November 2019
  • 0330484184

About the Author: Julian Barnes

Julian Patrick Barnes is a contemporary English writer of postmodernism in literature He has been shortlisted three times for the Man Booker Prize Flaubert s Parrot , England, England , and Arthur George , and won the prize for The Sense of an Ending He has written crime fiction under the pseudonym Dan KavanaghFollowing an education at the City of London School and Merton College, Oxford, he worked as a lexicographer for the Oxford English Dictionary Subsequently, he worked as a literary editor and film critic He now writes full time His brother, Jonathan Barnes, is a philosopher specialized in Ancient PhilosophyHe lived in London with his wife, the literary agent Pat Kavanagh, until her death on October Wikipedia.



10 thoughts on “Love, Etc

  1. Jim Fonseca Jim Fonseca says:

    Stuart and Oliver were good friends in London emphasis on the past tense Stuart fell in love with a woman, Gillian and got married But after three years, Oliver stole her away from Stuart Stuart went to the United States where he made a bit of money first in restaurants and then in organic food shops Stuart re married and divorced and now, ten years after his first divorce, he has decided to move back to England, set up business there, and look up his first wife Gillian and Oliver have a Stuart and Oliver were good friends in London emphasis on the past tense Stuart fell in love with a woman, Gillian and got married But after three years, Oliver stole her away from Stuart Stuart went to the United States where he made a bit of money first in restaurants and then in organic food shops Stuart re married and divorced and now, ten years after his first divorce, he has decided to move back to England, set up business there, and look up his first wife Gillian and Oliver have a child now but Stuart feels he is still in love with Gillian in fact he has even stalked her, once learning that they were vacationing in Italy, he booked a hotel across the street to spy on them.Stuart and Oliver have very opposite personalities Stuart is a go getter as shown by his business success, but Oliver is dreamy an artist always looking for someone to support his art projects He s impractical, can t really hold a job, and dysfunctional in day to day life He has had bouts of depression that have incapacitated him Gillian barely supports the family by working as a restorer of paintings Enter Stuart With his desire to get Jillian back, and with his money, he inserts himself into their life He gives them a good deal on the lease on his old, large house yes, the one he used to live in with Gillian He hires Oliver to pick up and deliver organic food Stuart hangs out at Oliver s and Gillian s house daily He becomes best friends with their little girl and starts dating Gillian s office assistant He even visits with his former mother in law Oliver secretly hates Stuart, barely functions in his delivery job, and goes into depression mode Stuart forces himself on Gillian Was it a rape The book is structured as a collection of passages, monologues really, from all parties written in the first person So we see incidents and attitudes in totally different perspectives And we hear not only from the three main characters but from Stuart s ex in the USA, Gillian s assistant, Gillian s mother and others Most notably, Oliver come across as a pompous ass using flatulent made up language For example, early on he says of Stuart he likes naff songs which actually predate him I mean, it s one thing to be hung up on cheap music synchronous with the primal engorgement of your own libidinous organs, be it Randi Newman or Luigi Nono But to be hung up on the sunlounger singalongeries of a previous generation that s so very, so touchingly Stuart, don t you find You wonder how Gillian could have fallen in love with Oliver and how she could have fallen for two so very different men in the first place Some passages that I liked that also illustrate Barnes strong writing In short, it was one of those scenes common to all marriages, where things are half talked about, and then a decision is made based on all the other things you haven t talked about every relationship contains within it the ghosts, or the shadows, of all the other relationships it isn t All the abandoned alternatives, the forgotten choices, the lives you could have led but didn t and haven t He is saying perhaps also that love is dramatic and hot and burning and noisy, while marriage is like a warm fog which stings your eyes and makes it impossible for you to see Life is a process during which your weakest places are inevitably discovered It is also a process during which you are punished for your earlier actions and desires Not punished justly, oh no that is part of what I meant by not believing in the gods simply punished like that Punished anarchically, if you like So where is all this going At times it s as the blurb says, a delightful farce to create a tragicomedy of human frailties and needs A good story that kept my attention all the way through Top photo Newham in East London from i.guim.co.ukPhoto of the author from inews.co.uk

  2. Ron Charles Ron Charles says:

    Cupid was shooting poison darts when he spied the characters in Love, etc This romantic bloodbath is the latest wicked novel from Julian Barnes, England s sharpest satirist.Tell them about Gillian.Do you mind I m trying to review a book here Ahem Lookinglike a script than a novel, this comic tragedy unfolds entirely in dialogue, as a series of soliloquies and private confessions on the oldest subject in the world Conveniently, all the parts are labeled, so it s clear from the start Cupid was shooting poison darts when he spied the characters in Love, etc This romantic bloodbath is the latest wicked novel from Julian Barnes, England s sharpest satirist.Tell them about Gillian.Do you mind I m trying to review a book here Ahem Lookinglike a script than a novel, this comic tragedy unfolds entirely in dialogue, as a series of soliloquies and private confessions on the oldest subject in the world Conveniently, all the parts are labeled, so it s clear from the start who s speakingTen years have passed since we met Gillian, Stuart, and Oliver in Talking It Over Vintage In that novel, Gillian switched her affections from Stuart to his best friend, Oliver, with devastating effect.No hard feelings All blood under the bridge.Since then, Gillian has beenor less happily married to Oliver and raising their two little girls She s a successful restorer of old paintings, and he s an unsuccessful film writer, whose pyrotechnic language flickers between wit and lunacy.If Gillian is so good at spotting fakes, what s she doing with Oliver The novel opens when Stuart makes a surprise reappearance in London He s returned from a decade in America, divorced again and rich from his organic food business Now, he just wants to pop in and catch up with his old friends.Oliver stole her off me He wanted my life so he took it He made Gill fall in love with him.The most enjoyable aspect of this initially entertaining and ultimately disturbing novel is the interplay of their various voices dialogues so carefully pitched that you ll swear you heard Love, etc instead of read it.I was dozing, I confess Et tu O narcoleptic and steatopygous Stuart, he of the crepuscular understanding and the Weltanschauung built of Lego Look, can we please take the longer view On the framework of a French sex farce, Barnes conducts a brutally frank examination of these three flawed characters Placed in the role of confessor, we re drawn into their desires and terrors, their petty attempts at one upmanship, and their semi transparent self justification This is a rotating love triangle with razor sharp points.What you have to understand is that Stuart wants you to like him, needs you to like him, whereas Oliver has a certain difficulty imagining that you won t.Much has changed in the intervening decade since Gillian jilted her lover and married his best friend, butstriking is what hasn t Barnes is at his best when he illustrates what an uncomfortably tight fit old friendship can become After all, ill matched spouses are allowed to divorce, but no such clean break exists for dysfunctional friends.Oliver and Stuart pick up just where they left off, jousting like young rivals But Stuart is not the insecure dullard he once was, and Oliver s rapier wit, once so flashy and intimidating, now seems irrelevant in the grownup world of equity and fatherhood.Oliver is planning to compress middle age into a single afternoon of lying down with a migraine.When Stuart offers Gillian and Oliver his old apartment in a nice section of town, Oliver immediately accepts and even takes a job delivering produce for Stuart s business Gillian anticipates the awkwardness of this entanglement with her exhusband, but Oliver feels so superior that he fails to see the tables turning.Real betrayal occurs among friends, among those you love.As Oliver falls under a grinding bout of depression, Gillian begins to consider whether Boring Reliable might not be better than Acerbic Clever.Despite the armor of his dazzling wit, Oliver turns that sarcastic sword on himself, stabbing his most tender victim In a typical Barnes move, the comedy drains away before we can escape, and we re forced to follow the painful ramifications of this situation, particularly as it affects Gillian s precocious daughter.Oh, don t look at me like that.The chaos of desire drives these characters in ways they can t control or even acknowledge This is irresistible gossip, from a writer of piercing wit and unsettling insight We can t help listening to these people, hoping they ll finally see themselves clearly hoping just as naively that we won t see ourselves in them c Copyright 2001 The Christian Science Publishing Society

  3. ·Karen· ·Karen· says:

    The conversation continues.There s Gillian, who appears the most sensible but may well be the most calculating and manipulative.There s Oliver, who appears the most up but is in fact down Way down.There s Stuart, who appears the most innocent but is in fact a scheming monster.A few other people are allowed to speak Gillian s Mum, her daughter, her colleague This adds spice to the mix But it was never bland, even before they popped in.Barnes makes the voices of Stuart and Oliver so distinc The conversation continues.There s Gillian, who appears the most sensible but may well be the most calculating and manipulative.There s Oliver, who appears the most up but is in fact down Way down.There s Stuart, who appears the most innocent but is in fact a scheming monster.A few other people are allowed to speak Gillian s Mum, her daughter, her colleague This adds spice to the mix But it was never bland, even before they popped in.Barnes makes the voices of Stuart and Oliver so distinct in themselves and so wondrously authentic feeling that I find it hard to resist the thought that they may be a slightly exaggerated representation of two extreme poles in his own character the quiet, thoughtful plotter and the ebullient witty wordsmith My apologies if that is presumptive, Mr Barnes I do not mean to deny the ability to invent Delicately ruthless Deceptively simple Delectable in every way

  4. Bianca Bianca says:

    Book no 4 by Julian Barnesprecisely, the fourth audiobook I loved Love, etc. The title itself couldn t be better because this novel is mostly about love and relationships and other things, that come under the umbrella of etc Barnes takes a magnifying glass and points it at love, especially as its manifestation between a man and a woman He does this very well through several unreliable narrators, but ultimately, this is the story of a threesome that s made up of Stuart and Oliver, be Book no 4 by Julian Barnesprecisely, the fourth audiobook I loved Love, etc. The title itself couldn t be better because this novel is mostly about love and relationships and other things, that come under the umbrella of etc Barnes takes a magnifying glass and points it at love, especially as its manifestation between a man and a woman He does this very well through several unreliable narrators, but ultimately, this is the story of a threesome that s made up of Stuart and Oliver, best friends, and their wife, Gillian Yes, that s right Gillian was married to both of them Not at the same time First, she was married to Stuart and then divorced him for Oliver Ten years later, Stuart comes back from the USA and gets back in touch with Gillian and Oliver, who now live in a shabby house and have two daughters Gillian is an art restorator, and Oliver is I m not sure what Stuart is a successful business man Slowly, he makes himself very useful by becoming their landlord, and eventually Oliver s employer Is Stuart still in love with Gillian Does he love today s Gillian or is he just thinking of the person he had fallen in love with all those years back This novel had an unusual structure that I don t remember coming across before The narrators addressed the reader directly Incredibly enough, but not surprising given Barnes talent, it worked really well There was a playfulness about it and it had a certain rhythm that kept things interesting and moving along at a fast pace It worked brilliantly as an audiobook, especially since three different narrators were reading the three main parts Each voice was distinctive and contributed in different ways at putting the puzzle together There were quite a few quotable passages, unfortunately, one of the disadvantages of audiobooks is that you can t keep track of them easily I usually do chores when I listen to the audiobook, I rarely never stop to take notes This was yet another fantabulous, brilliant, enlightening book from Julian Barnes Recommended4.5 stars

  5. Archit Ojha Archit Ojha says:

    One of the best sequels one can possibly think of The story keeps getting better Simply Brilliant

  6. W.D. Clarke W.D. Clarke says:

    2.5 reallythan it was all right because there were indeed times that I enjoyed it a lot particularly those sections which focused on one of my favourite characters in living memory the over educated three dimensional narcissist and connoisseur of archaicisms Oliver I was dozing, I confess Et tu O narcoleptic and steatopygous Stuart, he of the crepuscular understanding and the Weltanschauung built of Lego Look, can we please take the longer view Chou en lai, my hero Or Zho 2.5 reallythan it was all right because there were indeed times that I enjoyed it a lot particularly those sections which focused on one of my favourite characters in living memory the over educated three dimensional narcissist and connoisseur of archaicisms Oliver I was dozing, I confess Et tu O narcoleptic and steatopygous Stuart, he of the crepuscular understanding and the Weltanschauung built of Lego Look, can we please take the longer view Chou en lai, my hero Or Zhou en lai, as he later became What do you consider to have been the effect on world history of the French Revolution To which the wise man replied, It is too early to tell Or if not quite so Olympian or Confucian a view, then at least let s have some perspective, some shading, some audacious juxtapositions of pigment, OK Do we not, each of us, write the novel of our life as we go along But how few, alas, are publish able Behold the towering slush pile Don t call us, we ll call you no, on second thoughts, we won t call you either Now, don t rush to judgement on Oliver I ve cautioned you about that before Oliver is not a snob At least, not in the straightforward sense It is not the subject matter of these novels, or the social location of their protagonists, that is the problem The story of a louse may be as fine as the history of Alexander the Great everything depends upon the execution An adamantine formula, don t you agree What is needed is a sense of form, control, discrimination, selection, omission, arrangement, emphasisthat dirty, three letter word, art The story of our life is never an autobiography, always a novel that s the first mistake people make Our memories are just another artifice go on, admit it And the second mistake is to assume that a plodding commemoration of previously f ted detail, enlivening though it might be in a taproom, constitutes a narrative likely to entice the at times necessarily hard hearted reader On whose lips rightly lies the perpetual question why are you telling me thisI just can t get enough of that guy and his vocabulary, his self regard, and his the glass was three quarters empty when it was thrust upon me ism Otherwise, though Alas, I must ask of you, O Julian why are you telling me this , this whatever happened to, 10 years later tale Talking It Over was all that these three really needed of our attention except for the aforementioned Oliver, perhaps, though he definitely takes a back seat in this sequel, which is all Stuart s story, really and the story of a stockjobber turned grocery magnate is just not all that interesting or necessary, really And as for Gillian, she remains a bit of a cipher, I m afraid And everyone s sunk that much further into mediocrity Stuart , into bland opacity Gillian , into depression Oliver , and, well, into middle age spread ism all around, that it s kinda just depressing to read about them and their intervening decade of doing not all that muchitude Oliver s witty aper us because fewer in number just don t provide sufficient relief from the banality and bathos, alas An unnecessary read, albeit a quick one that rekindled fond memories of its superior predecessor, Talking It Over

  7. Pooja Pooja says:

    Julian Barnes at his best There can t be a sequel better than this one.Nobody knew for 10 years that Stuart, Gillian and Oliver s journey is not over in Talking It Over.If you want to see how twisted minds can take shape of a fantastic story, you ve got these

  8. Pierce Pierce says:

    Julian Barnes is a strange fish Kind of straddling both serious novels and escapism He s like an extremely capable and intellectual novelist who s decided to write very accessibly just because it s fun that way I like his sense of humour.But it s there, in these stories Deepness, darkness, complexity He still seems to write with the assumption that every normal reader has a smattering of French and a good understanding of Greek mythology He wears his smarts in the lining of his coat, not i Julian Barnes is a strange fish Kind of straddling both serious novels and escapism He s like an extremely capable and intellectual novelist who s decided to write very accessibly just because it s fun that way I like his sense of humour.But it s there, in these stories Deepness, darkness, complexity He still seems to write with the assumption that every normal reader has a smattering of French and a good understanding of Greek mythology He wears his smarts in the lining of his coat, not immediately apparent.So this is a sequel to Talking It Over, one I didn t realise existed until I went looking for something in the parents bookshelves again It seemed superfluous but I got into it I still can t help picturing everyone as the characters from Peep Show.Gillian was the character who bothered me most The one exuding the aura of reasonableness and innocence while just manipulating all over the place The guys seem so emotionally clueless they couldn t plan a mean thought and she just allows things to happen, all the while telling us about Love like it was a get out of jail free card.Fun to see Oliver and Stuart passing each other on their respective arcs Brings the overall story even closer to Martin Amis Success though

  9. Frank Frank says:

    Not one, not two, but three count em three unreliable narrators How fun Julian Barnes is brilliant This is the story of a love triangle, of sorts Oh it s all so very modern, or post modern, or at least contemporary Gillian and Oliver are married Oliver s one time best friend is Stuart Gillian and Stuart were once married Oliver stole Gillian from him one might say Oliver is a pompous prig, an over educated wastrel, with various projects in development which is another way of say Not one, not two, but three count em three unreliable narrators How fun Julian Barnes is brilliant This is the story of a love triangle, of sorts Oh it s all so very modern, or post modern, or at least contemporary Gillian and Oliver are married Oliver s one time best friend is Stuart Gillian and Stuart were once married Oliver stole Gillian from him one might say Oliver is a pompous prig, an over educated wastrel, with various projects in development which is another way of saying he thinks about things to do, but never does them Stuart was a bit of a milquetoast but seems to come into his own when he leaves England after the divorce, goes to the States and becomes a successful businessman in organic veggie marketing Go figure, it was the nineties Of course, then he comes back back to England, back into Gillian s and Oliver s lives.But none of that is important, that s only plot and character No, the brilliant and highly entertaining part of this book is the way it s told in separate, long, individualised block quotes As if the characters were speaking to an un identified interviewer, the person behind the camera Think of Woody Allen and Diane Keaton in Annie Hall, in the therapists sessions, speaking directly at the camera, the questions unheard, only inferred from the replies And you, the readers, are the camera Of course you didn t hear the questions you re hearing over your shoulder busy adjusting the lens or f stop or something , so every utterance no matter how seemingly banal is brilliant, and fraught with potential weight.And others get their say as well Gillian s mother, for example, has a fair bit to contribute, and Stuart s second ex wife And Gillian s young assistant who s shagging Stuart even Gill s and Ollie s daughter, Sophie poor kid.The artistry of course is that one hears each individual voice in the writing every few paragraphs the text shifts suddenly into that individual character s voice Some are easier than others, the children, Gill s mother she s French and doesn t speak the English so well, yes , but the three principles are all of the same class and educational background It s very well done and extremely entertaining.Love, etc., would make a fantastic mock umentary I kept seeing, or hearing rather, Hugh Laurie as Stuart, but he s a little long in the tooth at this point the principal liars are all in their mid 40s Still not too late for a youthful indiscretion Unfortunately I found after having finished that this is a sequal to his 1991 novel Talking it Over, which has the same format I m really going to have to check these things out

  10. Philip Philip says:

    It s hard to imagine aperfect marriage of form and content than Love, etc, in which Julian Barnes continues the story of characters that came to life in Talking It Over If, however, this marriage is fine, then equally the marriage of Gillian and Oliver is not And neither, for that matter, was the previous one that temporarily joined Gillian and Stuart.Julian Barnes tells the story of this love triangle entirely in the first person Gillian, Oliver and Stuart appear like talking heads on It s hard to imagine aperfect marriage of form and content than Love, etc, in which Julian Barnes continues the story of characters that came to life in Talking It Over If, however, this marriage is fine, then equally the marriage of Gillian and Oliver is not And neither, for that matter, was the previous one that temporarily joined Gillian and Stuart.Julian Barnes tells the story of this love triangle entirely in the first person Gillian, Oliver and Stuart appear like talking heads on a screen to relate their own side of things Since we left them at the end of Talking It Over, Stuart has moved to the States, where he has become a successful businessman and has found a new partner Oliver, meanwhile, having won the hand of fair Gillian, has started his family but has fallen on hard times, an experience he seems to regard merely as a passing phase, except that it s clearly not a phase and neither does it pass Re enter Stuart, and thus the situation progresses.Occasionally, especially when the principal actors mention them, minor characters appear to have their often substantial say There is an ex, a new girlfriend, an occasional mother Also, the children have their say, their naivet as confused as it is innocent, their vagueness inherited, perhaps, from their personal environment.And so a story unfolds Oliver is as full of theatre and bravura as he was throughout Talking It Over, but now it ringsof a bluff, a screen erected for self protection rather than an extrovert s sheen Unemployment and illness seem to have exhausted him Stuart, having made his fortune, is on an up and begins to reassert his desire to occupy the position he has always coveted, the space by Gillian s side.There are surprises in store, surprises for the characters and for the reader But what Julian Barnes communicates with such subtlety, skill and ease are the inconsistencies of human character, the incongruities of events, the contradictions and deceptions of behaviour, and the illusions these confusions create These people all act primarily out of self interest But then who doesn t That s the point And thus the process takes all of us to places we have all been, but have often failed to notice or acknowledge, even if we have admitted and recognised our motives, which most of us have not Love, etc is a brilliant book, brilliantly conceived and brilliantly executed with a lightness of touch that leaves us wholly surprised when we encounter a fundamentally serious point The plot Who cares

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