A Single Man

A Single Man

Book - 2013
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"Welcome to sunny surburban 1960s Southern California. George is a gay middle-aged English professor, adjusting to solitude after the tragic death of his young partner. He is determined to persist in the routines of his former life. We follow him over the course of an ordinary twenty-four hours. Behind his British reserve, tides of grief, rage, and loneliness surge- but what is revealed is a man who loves being alive despite all the everyday injustices."--back cover.
Publisher: New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2013
Copyright Date: ©1964
ISBN: 9780374533878
Branch Call Number: Fiction Isherwood
Characteristics: 186 pages ; 21 cm


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May 01, 2014

"One of the first and best novels of the modern gay liberation movement."-Edmund White
I'd seen the very stylish and very slow (sorry, I feel asleep just thinking about it) Tom Ford film of the book and have read a few other books by Christopher Isherwood, best known for his stories that inspired "Cabaret." "A Single Man" will be familiar to viewers of the film, although Isherwood makes it clear that his protagonist does not look like the dapper Colin Firth. It's a simple novel, elegantly written, but it is also curiously distant and the ending just made me shrug.

28thbather Jun 22, 2012

A beautiful little book.

crankylibrarian Apr 23, 2011

A rare example of an excellent movie based on, though not a slavish copy of an excellent book. Isherwood's sardonic, yet moving prose recounts the seemingly ordinary day in the life of George, a fussy, world weary, closeted gay English professor secretly grieving the loss of his lover.Blisteringly funny, yet heart-breaking.

Dec 12, 2010

Very rarely does a film entice me to read the novel afterwards, but this one did. It is a short day-in-the-life story about an English professor, George and how he was coping with the loss of his partner. I was amazed with what few details were shared about Jim, I was feeling the loss profoundly right along with him. It was wonderful - the prose was spare and the feelings of sadness and loneliness were powerfully captured. I loved it.

Aug 13, 2010

Truth be told, I came to this book by way of the movie. I love thoughtfully made movies, but they are not my preferred avenue to discover books ... but sometimes it works out for the better and this is one such case.

A Single Man, the mid-1960s short novel by Christopher Isherwood, captures the delicate minutiae of one person's day, along with that person's welling emotions and surprising spirit. George is a literature professor at a college in Southern California, set in the time in which the book was written and published. He is grappling with the sudden death of his longtime lover, Jim. While going about his day and his usual encounters in his neighbourhood and workplace, he is struggling from moment to moment with, well, how to *get* from moment to moment in the face of pervasive grief. I won't spoil either the book or the movie by saying that each interprets differently George's success in this struggle. In both, the end of George's day is both ironic but oddly life affirming. In both, it's entrancing to share the protagonist's 24-hour journey.


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