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TONIGHT 9-10PM! Come and meet the marvellous JULIAN BARNES, multi-award winning author of our February Book of the Month, THE NOISE OF TIME.

(90 Posts)
TillyMumsnetBookClub Mon 18-Jan-16 10:37:03

JULIAN BARNES is the author of twenty previous books, including The History of the World in 10 1/2 chapters, Flaubert’s Parrot, Metroland, England, England, Arthur and George and Levels of Life. The New York Times described him as ‘a literary decathlete’ – he is a master of a hybrid form of fact blended with fiction, equally happy writing novels or essays, endlessly inventive and consistently erudite and elegant. The Noise of Time, his first full-length work of fiction since the 2011 Booker Prize-winning The Sense of an Ending, is set in 1930s Russia. The composer Shostakovitch has begun sleeping outside his apartment door so that when Stalin's men arrive to take him to the Big House, they will not abduct his wife and daughter too. Pravda’s review has denounced his latest opera as ‘a muddle’; it only took a short while to graduate to ‘enemy of the people’. Power has begun to take an interest in him and Power will now hold the balance of his fate. As Shostakovitch reflects on his career, his family and his various mishaps and misdemeanours, the relationship between art and society is explored and uncovered. The Noise of Time is a brilliant reflection of one man’s consciousness, amid the fear and terror of authoritarian rule. Completely gripping and informative and entertaining, it is a classic Barnes concoction.

You can find an excellent, detailed profile on Barnes and all his books in The Observer

Random House have 50 copies of The Noise of Time to give to Mumsnetters: to claim your copy please fill in your details on the book of the month page. We’ll post on the thread when all the copies have gone. If you’re not lucky enough to bag one of those, you can always get a Kindle edition or hardback copy here

We are honoured and delighted that Julian Barnes will be joining us to answer your questions about The Noise of Time, his previous award-winning novels and his exceptional career on Tuesday 23rd February, 9-10pm. Please feel free to discuss the book here throughout the month and then come and meet Julian on the night, and ask him a question or simply tell him what you thought of the book. It’ll be a fascinating chat, very much hope you can make it…

Corygal1 Mon 18-Jan-16 21:28:30

Yes please!

IfItsGoodEnough4ShirleyBassey Tue 19-Jan-16 16:58:20

Ooh yes, haven't read a Julian Barnes for ages but used to love him.

Movingonmymind Tue 19-Jan-16 17:24:48

Great, filled in, thanks.

Tanaqui Tue 19-Jan-16 19:30:26

Will fill it in, but just wanted to add how much I liked the chapter "shipwreck" in History of the World"- haven't read it for 20 years but still clear in my mind- might just go and re read now!

SlinkyVagabond Tue 19-Jan-16 19:40:21

Yes please. I love the Duffy books

MuddhaOfSuburbia Tue 19-Jan-16 22:29:25

I love Julian Barnes. I've never yet read a JB book and been disappointed

Sense of an Ending had me bollocksed for DAYS

I think I might go and read it again

FreshsatsumaforDd Wed 20-Jan-16 00:07:14

I have just been reading the article in News Review in the Sunday Times and would love to read Julian Barnes new book.

JimmyGreavesMoustache Wed 20-Jan-16 09:24:08

I've put my name in the hat for a copy - love JB. Agree that Sense of an Ending is utterly moving, and Metroland still makes me laugh.

LuciaInFurs Thu 21-Jan-16 11:35:43

I loved A History of the World in 10½ Chapters, it was one of my A-Level texts and I still have my annotated copy.

TannhauserGate Fri 22-Jan-16 09:51:14

Oh, I love Julian Barnes!
I shall have to think of some questions...

99percentchocolate Fri 22-Jan-16 12:06:29

Sense of an ending was fantastic - only just recently discovered his books and looking forward to reading more. Have applied for a copy so fingers crossed.

TillyMumsnetBookClub Mon 25-Jan-16 11:59:16

Am so glad there are so many fans out there - I am completely over the moon that he is going to be here at Bookclub and already wondering how to edit my list of a thousand questions...

The Noise of Time is excellent - looking forward to hearing your thoughts, and hope you can all make it on Tues 23rd..

RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 25-Jan-16 14:52:47

The book giveaway is now closed. We'll be selecting the 50 who have been allocated books later today and will let you know if your name has been chosen by midday tomorrow. If you haven't been lucky this time, you can pre-order the book here (pub date is 28 Jan), or download the e-book.

angie95 Sat 06-Feb-16 11:31:27

Thank you for my copy of Julian Barnes book The Noise of Time,
Once I have read it, I will post a review, ;)

RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Sat 06-Feb-16 15:48:57

Horrah! so pleased they've arrived. Big apologies for the delay folks - it was totally my fault this time (email slipped through net) but v glad they've reached you and you have plenty of time to read ahead of the webchat.

whatwoulddexterdo Sat 06-Feb-16 17:07:02

Thank you so much, got my copy today. It's a lovely looking "proper" book if you know what I mean 😀
Looking forward to sharing my thoughts.

impostersyndrome Sat 06-Feb-16 17:53:41

Thanks very much for my copy. A hardback, such luxury! I'll be back once I've read it.

CheeseEMouse Mon 08-Feb-16 20:44:05

Thank you for my copy. I read it in two sittings over the weekend - which is rather an indication I enjoyed it and was hooked by the narrative.

I am really interested in the concept which blurs the lines between fact and fiction. I would be fascinated to find out how much of the novel was fact, and how much was interpretation?

I don't know a lot about the history of Stalinist Russia, but I felt the real sense of forboding and fear throughout the first section of the book. I also liked the way the composer's dealings with the state were framed as conversations with power - and consequently felt menacing in tone.

I quite enjoyed the structure of the book, and it didn't feel fragmented despite the fact it was written in 12 yearly intervals. I felt that Shostakovitch was a sympathetic figure in the book and I warmed to the way the character was portrayed and sympathised with his internal conflict.

Basically I thought it was really good, and will be passing my copy on to my mum (who has similar taste to me, so confident she'll like it too!).

MuddhaOfSuburbia Tue 09-Feb-16 10:10:34

in a TINY huff because I didn't get a copy envy

I'm going to wait till it comes out in paperback -no kindle, plus am too damn cheap to buy hardbacks

Now I'm going to hide thread so no spoilers (!)

Tell you what, though- I think JB will be on reading lists for years, and endure where other modern authors won't. The breadth of subject matters he covers is amazing. And his style. Always engaging, never get stuck reading the same bit over and over. And they stay with you

I would put JB up with Golding, me

Anyway, enjoy your reading and webchat you fuckers


Amaksy Tue 09-Feb-16 15:39:48

Thank you so much for my copy and hardback too, I'm excited and can't wait to start reading already.

wallers5 Thu 11-Feb-16 06:53:29

Thank for the interesting copy of The Noise of Time by Julian Barnes. It is certainly not chick lit! A fascinating insight into Russia in the mid 1930's with the terrifying threat of death if you did anything Stalin or his party did not like. The cover says it all with the poor Musician standing out in the corridor with his suitcase so as not to frighten his wife when he is taken away. Gripping to the end. It is another world. Much better to read about it than be in it.

impostersyndrome Sat 13-Feb-16 09:10:11

Hi Muddha, did you want my copy when I've finished with it? for free, obviously. I was going to pass it on to a charity shop so perhaps you can do the same when you're done with it. Just DM me.

Radley1 Thu 18-Feb-16 14:35:31

Thank you so much for my copy of the book A high brow controversial book on a government regime with restraints on freedom .The novel to me was wriitten like a piece of music in short snappy paragraphs like a staccato effect crescendos and interludes . A very clever effect based on the musicians opera of life. Well worth a read

StillNoFuckingEyeDeer Thu 18-Feb-16 19:21:28

I found it really hard to get into this book, but once I did, I was gripped. It was fascinating to read about what most have been a terrifying time to live in. I loved the style of the book - very different to the usual book I read. I have passed it on to my mum to read next.

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